Vodacom, Smart Lab partner to support business start-ups

V1Telecommunication company Vodacom Tanzania Plc and innovation hub Smart Lab have launched Vodacom Digital Accelerator, a programme that intends to help early-stage and growth-stage technology start-ups become profitable and revenue-generating businesses

The new programme which will run yearly aims at identifying and supporting start-up entrepreneurs in mobile, telecom, fintech, media, health, education, and e-commerce will have three phases which include application, selection and acceleration.

Hisham Hendi, Vodacom Tanzania Plc’s managing director, said that the partnership between Vodacom Tanzania and Smartcodes is a crucial move towards providing opportunities to start-up businesses via technological paths, which will result into workable business models that will benefit communities, especially scores of youth across the country.

He encouraged more youth to be innovative and take advantage of this opportunity as a path to economic empowerment through solving social developmental issues in their communities.

“Digital technology is not only changing the way we do business in Africa but also revolutionising the way we perceive and solve issues of development. It is therefore with great honour that we will once again create an opportunity for such ideas to be recognised, supported and transformed to maximise social impact”, he added.

Edwin Bruno, Smart Codes CEO, stated, “We are excited to be part of the Vodacom Accelerator, and together with Vodacom we hope to create a brand-building platform for the tech-savvy youth.”

“The innovation community has mushroomed in Tanzania from just a handful of hubs in 2011 to more than 45 in 2019, but there has been a slower involvement from the corporate side whereas Vodacom in this partnership with Smart Lab will lead in bridging that gap. We look forward to a tech-evolved-future for Tanzania that is full of disruptive solutions which will positively impact the coming generations.”

Vodacom’s director of Corporate Affairs Rosalynn Mworia said Vodacom is investing more than US$150,000 into the accelerator programme which will go towards educating and empowering Tanzania‘s youth.

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