Five female founders have each received KES1 million (US$10,000) in grant funding at the conclusion of the Women in Tech incubator program run by Standard Chartered Bank in partnership with @iBizAfrica-Strathmore University.
The fourth cohort of the Women in Tech Incubator was held virtually in October 2020. Out of 111 applicants, ten startups were selected to participate undergoing training, coaching, and mentorship offered by the @iBizAfrica-Strathmore University network of key industry experts and professionals.
The program focused on ventures that were tech-driven or those that leveraged on new technologies such as artificial intelligence, IoT, robotics, augmented and virtual reality, cloud computing, drone technology and biometrics.
The winning startups of the just-concluded Women in Tech Incubator are:
Viwanda Africa Group, a company that improves flight safety through a cloud-based AI platform for aircraft maintenance and spare parts planning;
Ecila Films, a producer of authentic African stories;
Ufasiri Halisi SLI Innovations, a provider of revolutionizing assistive technology for the deaf and hard of hearing;
Runnovate, a startup that helps business owners save time and reduce costs by connecting them with a team of virtual assistants; and
Mandevu Beardcare, a men’s grooming company offering a beard care product line.
Here are the amazing women driving these successful startups.
Jacqueline Nyambura Kamau
Jacqueline is the founder of Viwanda Africa Group, a company providing an African-led solution to improving flight safety and driving aerospace innovation. Having decided to pursue her goal to be an aerospace engineer at 14, she enrolled at the University of Sheffield (UK) where she completed a three-year aerospace engineering degree,”
She is passionate about providing sustainable solutions for the unique African Aerospace industry. Through Viwanda, she deploys AI solutions to enable preventative aircraft maintenance, mitigating accidents and inefficient maintenance, and improve spares inventory management.
Joan is the founder of Ecila Films a production house that creates Authentic African content that focuses on women, teens, indigenous communities and entrepreneurs in Kenya and East Africa. As a writer and filmmaker, she aims to transform African societies through her work.
In recognition of her contributions, Joan has received several nominations and awards. She was named Winner of Mofilm 2016 Competition for branded content about Richard Turere LION LIGHTS. She’s also a 2018 Obama Leader, aKoma Africa Fellow, and YALI Fellow.
Jolleen is a young entrepreneur on a mission to help create work opportunities for youths in Kenya. In 2020, she launched Runnovate to provide youths with a digital platform where they can learn digital skills that will enable them to scale in their professional careers.
Currently a student at Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania, the United States, she’s been awarded the Rockefeller Acumen Student Social Enterprise award for her workforce development efforts to support her social impact projects.
The founder of Ufasiri Halisi SLI Innovations, Silvia is a social entrepreneur passionate about the Deaf community; she partners with both the public and private sector to champion Deaf rights. After spending over a decade in the Deaf community, Silvia has garnered a wealth of experience and is committed to disrupting the status quo and fostering inclusivity.
As an advocate of the often marginalized group of people, she demonstrated empathy during the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic by leading an initiative to produce Covid-19 personal hygiene videos with Kenyan Sign Language interpretation which was distributed among disabled people through WhatsApp and other social media websites.
Silvia is the winner of the Education & ICT award from the inaugural Unleash 2017, where talents from all over the world came together to create real scalable solutions to the Sustainable Development Goals.
Njoki is the founder of Mandevu Beard Care, a men’s grooming company that offers a beard care product line.
Njoki is a graduate of International Relations and Management from USIU, Kenya. In 2013, she quit her job as a Media manager in an advertising agency to co-found her own digital agency. Having acquired a taste for entrepreneurship, she launched Mandevu Beard Care.