ACCRA, Ghana, 29th April, 2021 — MEST, in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, has announced the top three performing Ghanaian tech startups that recently graduated from its Beta 2020 cohort of the MEST Express Accelerator program. The program aims to equip early-stage ventures with the skills and resources they require to accelerate their growth.
These top performing startups will receive equity-free grant funding and support that will enable them to address urgent needs and expand their operations.
The finals, held at the MEST incubator space in Accra, Ghana, and broadcast virtually, saw six startups — Bosea, PayBox, Oniocha, Motito, WeGoo, and Tukwan — take to the stage to deliver their pitches. Final selection was based on performance throughout the program and the final pitch.
First place was awarded to the FinTech platform Bosea — a mobile technology and data science company that provides mobile loans in Ghana. To date, Bosea has recorded more than 35,000 loan applications through its smartphone app, which provides instant credit scoring, lending, and other personalized financial services.
“When we launched the MEST Express program last year, we knew there was a need for an accelerator that was specifically designed to address the critical needs of startups in Ghana due to the effects of the pandemic. Seeing these companies’ growth over the past several months reinforces the fact that we are on the right track. I am very proud of the cohort and the grant winners. Bosea is a shining example that hard work, perseverance, and a clear vision can see you through the toughest times and even leave you stronger for it,” said Felix Darko, MEST Express Program Manager.
Bosea will receive $10,000 in grant funding towards the development of their Credify product, a lending-as-service platform that enables micro-credit and microfinance firms to fully digitize their operations. It offers a suite of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that enable end-to-end customer journeys capable of being a single platform for all decisions that involve credit.
“Our involvement in MEST Express exposed us to best practices in the tech industry. We had access to world-class experts in all areas of company building. At the end of the program, we had a clearer vision and a solid plan to get there,” said Paul Eshun, CEO of Bosea.
Second and third place Wegoo and Motito will receive $6,000 and $4,000 respectively to support their operations.
The funding will also provide essential resources needed to improve the resilience of these startups. All six startups will continue to receive post-program support from MEST Express.
“An environment where high-potential tech startups can be supported, through capacity building and funding, will contribute to building an ecosystem of thriving businesses that are led by and employ young people in Ghana,” said Kofi Dadzie, Ghana Program Lead for Digital Economy at the Mastercard Foundation.
About the Startups
Bosea Micro Credit is a financial technology company on a mission to democratize credit and accelerate financial independence in Ghana. Most of its customers have little or no access to banks or other traditional financial institutions. Bosea uses mobile technology and data science to make financial services simple, inclusive, and accessible.
Wegoo is a platform that supports small businesses with affordable and reliable on-demand delivery services.
PayLater by Motito provides customers the opportunity to purchase essential items for personal and business needs without breaking the bank.