Orrick Partners With MyAfricanStartUp to Identify the Top 100 African Entrepreneurs of 2017

March.06.2017

Orrick and MyAfricanStartUp announce the world’s first ranking of the most innovative African startups. The list showcases 100 startups spanning 22 African countries. It seeks to increase the visibility among African and international investors of startups with high-growth potential.

“There are some incredibly exciting investment opportunities throughout Africa, and we are excited about the potential of this list to create valuable connections between investors and entrepreneurs in Africa,” said Benjamin Cichostepski, leader of Orrick’s Technology Companies Group in Paris.

“It is challenging for investors to find the appropriate African startups in which they can invest. This ranking list enables us to provide investors with an efficient tool that both analyzes the market and helps find rare pearls among startups,” says Christian Kamayou, founder of MyAfricanStartUp.

On February 22, Orrick’s Paris office hosted a launch event for the MyAfricanStartUp 100 list, bringing together the benchmark players of the African digital ecosystem, including more than 180 entrepreneurs and other members of the venture capital and impact investing space.

In addition to Orrick and MyAfricanStartUp, other key members of the evaluation and selection team include the African Development Bank, HEC Paris, Emerging Capital Partners, Air France, CFAO and LelapaFund.

The team applied a rigorous methodology to examine 780 startups over an eight-month period. The final list includes companies launched in two Portuguese-speaking countries, nine English-speaking countries and four Arabic-speaking countries. “The high number of reports that were reviewed and analyzed is extremely encouraging and illustrates the continent’s potential,” said Guillaume Vitrich, M&A private equity associate in Orrick’s Paris office.

Featured startups include a Cameroonian video game publisher that focuses on international markets; a Kenyan startup that provides clean energy at a competitive price; and an Ivorian company that is revolutionizing the way mobility is evolving in West Africa.

“With Orrick’s deep roots across Africa, and our global leadership in the tech sector, we are delighted to partner with other leading market participants to promote the tech ecosystem,” added Pascal Agboyibor, head of Orrick’s Africa practice.

Created in 2015, My AfricanStartUp is an African private sector support initiative designed to support the creation and development of startups. MyAfricanStartUp offers an online platform to provide digital visibility, an annual meeting of African startups organized jointly with the African Development Bank and, now, the MyAfricanStartUp 100 ranking of the entrepreneurs who will become key players in innovation and the African private sector in the coming years.