Tunis, Tunisia, 12 October 2023 – AfricArena Announces Winners at Tunis Summit 2023
The second day of the AfricArena Tunis AI, DeepTech, HealthTech & EdTech Summit which took place from 11 – 12 October 2023 concluded on Thursday after several interesting panel discussions and startup pitch tracks with a glittering awards ceremony in which the winning startups from each pitch track receive an award.
The pitch battles over the two-day summit were intense, invigorating, and refreshing for delegates attending the summit, and a testament to the resilience of Tunisia’s tech and startup ecosystem. Tunisia is proving to be the desert rose in North Africa’s tech and startup ecosystem as the country’s key ecosystem players collaborate and unite in a remarkable tour de force that sees Tunisian ecosystem support organizations leverage each other’s strengths to weather through the current wintry economic downwind and build incredible startups with strong digital backbones in preparation for the next bull run. Middle East and African countries are taking note as Tunisia has proven itself as a pioneer, being the first African country to legislate the Startup Act.
Each Tunisian and international startup from across the African continent brought something interesting to the table for investors and VC funds to take into consideration. The caliber of each startup is just a showcase of the meteoric rise of Africa’s tech ecosystem within the global VC landscape.
AfricArena hosted its first edition of the summit in 2021 and 2022 under the AfricArena North Africa Summit banner and for its third edition this year, the AfricArena AI, DeepTech, HealthTech & EdTech Summit to align with Tunisia’s rise as an African and global AI and deep tech hub. AfricArena founder and CEO Christophe Viarnaud said it is incredible to see how a series of incremental changes have made a significant difference to Tunisia’s tech and startup ecosystem in just a few years. He recalled how in 2018, investment in Tunisia was below $2 million and now, investment exceeds this amount, with Tunisia becoming an attractive investment destination.
“We are impressed with the incredible progression of the Tunisian tech ecosystem, particularly in the areas of deep tech, hardware, AI, and data,” Viarnaud mentioned that the track record and proceeds from the Expensya and InstaDeep exits will start another wave of amazing seed startups that will thrive and propel Tunisia and Africa forward into the continent’s digital transformation.
Ms Nejia Gharbi, Director General at Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations; Yasmine Laribi, Head of Unit Ecosystem Promotion and Culture of Entrepreneurship & Innovation at Expertise France and Magda Mahjoub, Digital Transformation Specialist at GIZ Tunisie handed out the awards to each winner.
The winners from each pitch track received an opportunity to pitch in the final pitching rounds at the AfricArena Cape TownGrand Summit taking place in Cape Town from 5 – 6 December where the overall winners of this year’s AfricArena Tour will be announced.
Each winner announced at the summit wins $10,000 in AWS Activate credits just for participating in the AfricArena Tunis Summit and the finalists who participate in the AfricArena Cape Town Grand Summit will win $25,000 in AWS Activate credits. Over $250,000 in AWS credits was granted to winners at the AfricArena Tunis AI, DeepTech, HealthTech & EdTech Summit. The Deep Tech pitch track is powered by Savant, Africa’s only dedicated hardware technology incubator and investor, and the Women in Tech pitch track is powered by AWS.
The winners of the AfricArena Tunis AI, DeepTech, HealthTech & EdTech Summit are as follows: Best AI Startup:
NextAV (Bilel Khlaifia, CTO at NextAv)
Best Deep Tech Startup: KumulusWater (Iheb Triki, Co-Founder and CEO)
Best Ed Tech Startup: Gamer’s Territory (Tshepiso Malema, Founder and CEO)
Best Health Tech Startup: Viventis (Mehdi Bouzouita, COO)
Best Women in Tech AI Startup: Blassa (Amel Abid, Founder & COO)
Best Seed Startup: Konnect (Bechir Neifer Head of Business Development)
Most Innovative Business Model: Hyo-Tech (Bilel Gassara, Founder and CEO)
Best Promising Entrepreneur: Deaf Square (Sonia Nasfi CEO and founder, Nourelimen Nasfi co-founder and CMO)
Most Attractive Investor: Silicon Badia (Hamed Masri, Partner)
Viarnaud thanked all the partners who made the AfricArena Tunis AI, DeepTech, HealthTech & EdTech Summit possible, and he said as the awards ceremony ended, that “AfricArena remains committed to being one of the leading ecosystem catalysts in the Tunisian tech ecosystem.”
The summit was held in partnership with AWS Startups; Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations; Le Project Startups et PME Innovantes; Special Initiative Decent Work for a Just Transition – “Invest for Jobs” mandated by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by GIZ Tunisie through its Digital Transformation Program; Expertise France through Innov’I – EU for Innovation project, funded by the European Union; Startup Tunisia piloted by Smart Capital; Ministère des Technologies de la Communication, Savant and Methys Group.