Being a man, I have always believed that the best we can do is to listen to what women entrepreneurs in Africa need and assist them in addressing those needs. Because weโ€™ve never walked a day in their shoes, ours is to listen and support.

Listening to many women entrepreneurs, especially across Africaโ€™s digital technology sector, it is clear that the core of their needs can be distilled down to economic empowerment. This can be in the form of funding opportunities, opportunities to be suppliers to bigger companies, grants, and more.

Donโ€™t just take my word for it, it is a reality that women entrepreneurs receive less venture funding than men:

โ€œThe reality-check list on the continentโ€™s state of female entrepreneurship is long and includes greatly uneven access to funding for female entrepreneurs when compared with their male counterparts. For example: from January 2019 to April 2020, 13.4% of the 276 disclosed deals went to companies with at least one female on the founding team and this was just 5.7 % of the total invested capital. Within the first 4 months of 2020, this declined to 3.2%.โ€ - Nitin Gajria, Managing Director at Google Africa.

So, instead of hosting panel discussions and conferences and workshops to discuss how we can empower women entrepreneurs, letโ€™s get on with the business of actually empowering them with economic opportunities.

Top Stories

๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿฟโ€๐Ÿ’ป Women face numerous challenges. According to the African Development Bank, these challenges continue to drive gender inequality and even limit the continentโ€™s progress in totality. In a similar vein, challenges identified, at the Africa Union Gender Pre-Summit on the 2016 African Year of Human Rights, as pressing for women included, but were not limited to, economic exclusion and discrimination from financial systems. The reality-check list on the continentโ€™s state of female entrepreneurship is long and includes greatly uneven access to funding for female entrepreneurs when compared with their male counterparts. Therefore, the key to dismantling the structural challenges women face across Africa lies in strengthening their economic power. Link

๐Ÿ’ธ Paystack, the Nigerian FinTech startup which was acquired by Stripe for $200 million in 2020, has been announced as WooCommerceโ€™s preferred payment partner across Africa. Considering that WooCommerce is the biggest e-commerce solution across Africa, this is a big win for Paystack. The Nigerian fintech startup has said that the partnership means that Paystack will now be more closely integrated into the WooCommerce experience. To accept payments, users can now simply select Paystack as their payment option right from your WooCommerce Dashboard. This is an improvement from previously having to download and install the Paystack plug-in on WooCommerce. Link

๐Ÿ๏ธ One of the associated industries that have gained from the growth of boda bodas in Kenya is the energy sector. It is estimated that boda boda riders spend about 25% of their income on fuel. This would translate to about KShs 250 million spent every day on fuel. As of 2020, there were more than 1,4 million boda boda riders in Kenya, doing a total of 22 million rides per day. The total revenue from the industry is KShs 980 million per day. With electric bikes, boda boda operators can save on fuel costs, spare parts, servicing, and reduce their carbon dioxide emissions. Link

๐Ÿฑโ€๐Ÿ’ป In understanding the mind of a cybercriminal, we need to understand that cybercriminals are in it for one thing: financial pay-off. They want the money that comes with offering their tools or services, selling stolen data, extortion like ransomware, or plain fraud. It is critical to understand how cybercriminals operate, the tools they use and the approaches they take to embed robust security within the organization. Organizations have to sit on the sharp end of the security stick with robust monitoring and detection systems, clear policies, consistent training, and security boundaries. Link

๐Ÿ–ฅ๏ธ Digital transformation has been ongoing in most financial service organizations for some time. As such, many should be ready in time for the Protection Of Personal Information Act (POPIA) deadline in South Africa. Digital transformation alongside automation enablers like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA), coupled with the responsible utilization of data assets will be determining business success factors over the next five years. Looking forward, increasing digital interactions, engagement, digital delivery of services or products will fast become the norm. The further demise of brick-and-mortar and its associated servicing models is almost guaranteed. Link

Thought of the Day

To support and empower women means to offer them funding opportunities and to empower them economically. (Tweet this | Share on WhatsApp)

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