This is the last week to apply for Startup Battlefield Africa

We gave you an extension, but if you’re part of a startup in
sub-Saharan Africa, the time to act is now. You have just five
more days to put together an application to TechCrunch’s
inaugural Startup Battlefield Africa, so
it’s time for you to drop everything else you were doing and
apply today.

We’re excited to be partnering with
to bring our illustrious startup competition, the
Startup Battlefield, to Nairobi,
Kenya later this year. The Battlefield will feature
several prominent startups from the region, each looking to be
crowned the most promising startup in sub-Saharan Africa.

As a reminder, startups can apply to one of three categories:
social good, productivity and utility or gaming and
entertainment. As long as your company fits into one of these
categories and you meet the eligibility criteria at the bottom
of this post, you are encouraged to apply before the new
deadline mentioned above.

The application page can be found here. Applications will be accepted
now through Friday, July
, so be sure to apply today. Companies selected
to participate will be notified by August 21.

The Battlefield will be held in Nairobi in front of a live
audience, as well as prominent judges representing each
category. We also will be live streaming the show on TechCrunch
and Facebook so the rest of the world can tune in.

Our judges will choose a winner in each category and then
select an overall winner, “Sub-Saharan Africa’s Most Promising
Startup.” The company that wins the overall competition will
secure $25,000 USD in no-equity cash plus an all-expense paid
trip for two to San Francisco to compete in the Battlefield at
TechCrunch’s flagship event, Disrupt SF 2018.

We’re especially excited to be hosting this event during a
period of promising growth for the region. Sub-Saharan Africa
just produced its first unicorn, online shopping site Jumia,
exits in the region are increasingly frequent and VCs all
around the world are taking notice.

The Startup Battlefield Africa event will take place October 11
in Nairobi, Kenya at a location to be announced. We hope to see
you and your promising social good, productivity and utility or
gaming and entertaining company there.

More info about eligibility criteria and the event itself
is found below.

Here’s how to participate

Startups must fit into one of three categories (social good,
productivity and utility or gaming and entertainment) to
participate. Five startups in each category will be selected to
join us onstage for the Battlefield Africa in Nairobi.

Apart from clear relevance to one of the three themes,
qualifying startups should:

  • Be early-stage companies in “launch” stage
  • Be a resident from our eligible countries
  • Have a fully working product/beta, reasonably close to or
    in production
  • Have received limited press or publicity to date
  • Have no known intellectual property conflicts

What do the winners receive?
Apart from the exposure that comes from pitching to the global
TechCrunch audience, as well as the live audience of
distinguished technologists, entrepreneurs and investors in
Nairobi, the overall winner will receive
US$25,000 in no-equity cash plus an
all-expense paid trip for two to San Francisco to compete in
the Battlefield at TechCrunch’s flagship event, Disrupt SF in

Are costs to attend the pitch-off covered?
No, but TechCrunch will try to find financial assistance for a
startup in need of assistance to reach the Nairobi event.

Who picks the startups that will compete?
The TechCrunch editors who run the TechCrunch Startup
Battlefield competition will choose the finalists from the
application pool.

Who will judge the pitch-offs?
TechCrunch and Facebook will select four judges for each theme.
They will be noted entrepreneurs, investors and technologists
with experience relevant to the category. A TechCrunch editor
will moderate the judging and cast the tie-breaker ballot, if

What is the pitch-off format?
Each company will have five minutes to present. The judges will
have five minutes to ask questions. Live demos are strongly

What are the judging criteria?
Productivity and
Utility — The judges will pick the startup with the product or
service most likely to go into full commercial production and
have the biggest impact on human potential and/or the largest

Social Good — The judges will look for the startup with the
product most likely to catalyze social and economic development
through technology.

Gaming and Entertainment — The judges will pick the startup
with the product or service most likely to see wide consumer
adoption and have either the biggest exit and/or impact on
gaming and entertainment.

When is the application deadline?
July 21st, 2017 at 5pm PST.

When will you notify the finalists?
August 21st, 2017 at 5pm PST.

Will TechCrunch’s team help prepare startups for the

Yes; in-person training and rehearsal sessions will be
required, as well as in-person rehearsal on October 10th.

What else do I need to know?
The pitch-off is on October 11th, 2017. There will be a
reception at the end of the pitch-off, where each company will
have room to exhibit and talk 1:1 with pitch-off attendees.

What countries are eligible?
Residents in the
following countries may apply: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina
Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cabo Verde, Central Africa Republic,
Chad, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of
the Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia,
Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho,
Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius,
Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and
Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South
Africa, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia
and Zimbabwe.

Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the foregoing
language, the “Applicable Countries” does not include any
country to or on which the United States has embargoed goods or
imposed targeted sanctions (including, but not limited to,

If you would like to apply — please click here.
Refer innovators you admire to
Questions? Get in touch at

See you in Nairobi!

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