The DNA of Startupbootcamp (SBC) AfriTech is a double helix of two core principles – ‘African Solutions for African Challenges’ and ‘For Africans By Africans’.
Since being founded in 2017, one of the most important goals for the company has been to ensure that all of the most critical roles are filled by African team members who can lead and inspire the startup founders that participate in its world-class accelerator programmes.
The most visible and impactful role in the company is the Founder in Residence who is responsible for all aspects of the flagship accelerator programme.
Today, SBC AfriTech announces that Oshone Ikazoboh has joined the team and will be leading cohort two of its ASIP Accelerator, which will open for applications on 15 November.
Startupbootcamp is the leading corporate-backed accelerator in Africa, and the success of its alumni is a direct result of the extensive Corporate Startup Collaboration.
For that reason, the Founder in Residence role requires an individual with an unusual mix of experience working in large corporates AND as a startup founder. Ikazoboh is one of only a handful of Africans with this rare and valuable ability to blend these two contradictory worlds.
He grew up in Lagos, Nigeria, and studied at Liverpool John Moores University in the United Kingdom, graduating in 2008 with a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, Networking, and Telecommunications.
He began his career building successful startups in the IT space, with clients like Afrinvest and the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
Following that, he founded and served as CEO of naij.com which grew into one of the largest community sites in Nigeria.
After its sale, naij.com became legit.ng and it now has over 10.5 million viable social media followers. In 2013, Ikazoboh exited the company and went to West House IT West Africa, where he oversaw all divisions to ensure that the company was realising all set targets. His next startup was Zoto, one of the early pioneer wallet/payment solutions in Nigeria.
Zoto was a digital banking application that allowed users to purchase airtime and pay bills digitally through the click of a button.
At the forefront of digital innovation, Zoto was one of the first applications in the industry to have a customer care avatar (Zubby).
Most recently, Ikazoboh joined Access Bank, as the Managing Director for the Payment Services Company arm. He helped launch an in-house startup and also assisted in transforming the mindset of the bank, helping them become more lean and agile.
As Founder-In-Residence, Ikazoboh will now become the ‘co-founder’ of 10 new startups in each cohort (40+ startups in total over the next three years) and will lead SBC AfriTech’s efforts in scouting, skilling, and scaling the most disruptive startups on the continent.
His extensive network in Nigeria, which includes some of the biggest banks in Africa, will be an invaluable resource for the company’s startup founders.
“We welcome Oshone to our dynamic team and look forward to transforming the African tech ecosystem together,” says SBC AfriTech Chief Disruptor, Philip Kiracofe.
One of the biggest gaps that SBC AfriTech has identified with African startups is storytelling. There are incredible innovators with inspiring solutions to massive challenges, but the African stories rarely get noticed and are consistently overshadowed by startups from Silicon Valley, Europe, and more popular emerging markets like India.
SBC AfriTech portfolio companies learn how to pitch their USP, value proposition, and ‘secret sauce’ to level the playing field and put them on parity with world-class accelerator programmes.
SBC AfriTech is thrilled to announce that Jocelyn Nyaguse has joined in the role of Storytelling and Marketing Lead.
Nyaguse brings a wealth of experience to the company and its startups, having previously held prestigious roles including Africa Communications at Impact Hub and Head of Digital for one of Zimbabwe’s leading ad agencies, Columbus DDB.
Jocelyn originally joined SBC AfriTech as an Entrepreneur in Residence focused on marketing, and she was responsible for the pitch training as well as hosting weekly podcasts and Clubhouse discussions with founders, investors, luminaries, and influential stakeholders in the African tech ecosystem.
In her new role, she will expand the company’s efforts in building platforms, including on Twitter Spaces, to amplify the stories of innovators across the African continent.
SBC AfriTech is a pan-African accelerator programme, and this year has opened a new campus in Dakar, which will be the home for the ASIP Accelerator going forward.
“Running hybrid online and in-person programmes bring new opportunities for us to expand our impact on the African tech ecosystem. It also creates significant new operational and logistical challenges for our team.
For this reason, Danielle Joubert has been promoted to Director of Operations. Over the last three years, she has risen through the ranks and continues to be the glue that holds together a company with team members, startups, founders, mentors, corporate partners, and programmes spread across the entire continent,” shares Kiracofe.
He concludes by saying; “SBC AfriTech exists to accelerate the next generation of African innovators and we are excited to see what is possible from our unrivalled team.”
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