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Africa Startup Initiative Programme Unveils New Cohort, Two Other Things And A Trivia

This line-up of stories will help you discover the latest happenings around the tech world, today.

1. Africa Startup Initiative Programme, ASIP, unveils new cohort

Africa Startup Initiative Programme, ASIP, has unveiled a new cohort comprising of 10 Africa startups.

The new sponsorship comes in partnership with mobile operator Telecel.

The initiative was launched in 2017 as the first multi corporate-backed pan-African startup accelerator.

According to the team, more than 2,200 applications were received for the programme.

The 10, which made it as finalists, emerged from an intensive two-day selection process of 20 semi-finalists.

Five of the cohort are from Nigeria, and are listed to include Agrodata, AGS Tribe, NucleusIS, Ustacky, and Worldbay Technologies.

Other featuring startups include ventures from Cameroon, Gbana, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Zambia.

Tech Trivia: What is the estimated distance travel of a typist’s fingers daily?

A. 12 miles
B. 5 miles
C. 10 miles
D. 6 miles

Answer: See end of post.

2. Visa to buy Swedish fintech, Tink, for $2.2 billion

American multinational tech company Visa Inc disclosed on Thursday it had agreed a 1.8 billion euro ($2.2 billion) takeover of European open banking platform Tink.

The development comes months after the company ditched a planned acquisition of the startup’s U.S. rival Plaid.

Tink was founded in 2012 in Sweden to enable banks and other financial firms access consumer financial data more easily.

Today, it is used by more than 3,400 banks and other institutions, as well as over 250 million customers across Europe.

According to venture analysts, Visa was forced to terminate a planned $5.3 billion deal with U.S. data-sharing platform Plaid in January, following a U.S. government lawsuit aimed at blocking the deal on antitrust grounds.

3. Kenyan’s Ed Partners closes $1.9m funding round

Kenyan startup, Ed Partners Africa, has announced closing US$1.9 million in funding.

The new raiser comes as the startup looks to improve the quality of education received by learners from low-income communities.

The startup was founded in 2018 by Lydia Koros and David FitzHerbert to improve access to affordable, quality education in Africa.

According to local media, Ed Partners provides loans to affordable private schools by bringing access to formal credit to their doorstep.

The board noted that the company has cumulatively disbursed US$1.5 million to 142 schools reaching out to 41,000 students.

Listing its investors, the startup revealed that the round saw the participation of global social impact investor Acumen, I&P, Zephyr and existing investors.

Tech Trivia Answer: 12.6 miles

On an average work day, a typist’s fingers travel about 12.6 miles, approximately 20km.

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TCN Restores National Grid

The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has announced the restoration of the national grid after its partial collapse on Monday.

This was made known by Mrs Ndidi Mbah, TCN’s General Manager, Public Affairs in a statement in Abuja.

Mbah said that the national grid experienced partial system disturbance at about 10.51 am, as a result of a sudden drop in system frequency, which created system instability.

She said that the restoration of the affected grid commenced immediately at 11.55 am with Osogbo/Ihovbor, followed by Jebba/Osogbo, Kainji/Jebba, Benin/Onitsha, Shiroro/Kaduna, Shiroro/Katampe and Alaoji/Ikot-Ekpene.

Others are Lokoja/Gwagwalada, Odukpani/Ikot Ekpene, Benin/Omotosho, Oke-Aro/Ikeja west, Egbin/Oke-Aro and Kaduna/Kano.

She said the grid restoration has almost been completed, adding that the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) regrets any inconveniences caused.

Mbah said NESI appreciated the understanding of electricity customers within and outside the country.

According to her, NESI is committed to leveraging the concerted interventions instituted so far to enhance power supply reliability so that the issue of system disturbance will soon become outdated.

She said the National Control Centre would launch a full-scale investigation “to establish and ascertain the cause of the partial disturbance as this unwholesome event has resulted in aggregated generation loss.



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Chukwudi Ajaegbu, 35, Arraigned For $11,000 Fraud

A 35-year-old importer, Chukwudi Ajaegbu, has been arraigned before the Ogba Magistrate’s Court for allegedly obtaining $11,000 fraudulently from one Austine Ukaoha in the Ikeja area of Lagos State.

Ajaegbu appeared before Magistrate F.M. Onamusi on a three count charge.

The defendant, with others at large, were said to have conspired to commit felony, to wit stealing, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 411 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, Nigeria 2015.

According to the police, sometime in 2010 on Bread Fraint Street, in the Balogun area of Lagos, the defendant, with others at large, conspired among themselves to obtain the sum under false pretences.

The charges read in part, “That you, Chukwudi Ajaegbu, on the same date, time and place, in the Lagos Magisterial District, did fraudulently obtain the sum of $11,000 from one Austine Ukaoha, under the pretence of importing goods from China, the presentation known to be false, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 314 (3) of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, Nigeria 2015.”

The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Magistrate Onamusi adjourned the matter till December 7, 2022.

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2023: NBC Tasks Broadcasters On Professionalism

The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has tasked broadcasters to handle political campaigns with professionalism.

The director-general of NBC, Balarabe Ilelah said this on Monday at a multi-stakeholders dialogue held in Abuja.

As campaigns for the 2023 elections are set to begin on September 28, Ilelah asked broadcasters to ensure not to allow hate speech or fake news on their platforms.

“This is in addition to ensuring equity in airtime allocation and coverage of political parties’ activities, particularly during prime times,” he said.

“It is also the time for you to make money from political adverts and campaigns, but ensure that this is done within the ambit of law.

“Broadcasters are also required to handle live political rallies with care and due professionalism. This is in addition to studio-based live political interviews/broadcasts. Because of the sensitivities of such programmes, broadcasters are advised to install delay mechanisms.

“Remember that broadcast stations are held responsible for any breach. The stations shall, therefore, assume and accept editorial responsibility”, he added.

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