Zambian Innovation hub BongoHive has announced that it has opened applications for its annual BongoHive FinTech Challenge.

Through this challenge, BongoHive, in partnership with Financial Sector Deepening Zambia Limited (FSD Zambia) aim to support the growth of the digital economy and increase access to financial services for all Zambians. It will explore opportunities for financial inclusion and innovation from aspiring entrepreneurs in the fintech space.

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The BongoHive FinTech Challenge challenge will combine BongoHive’s entrepreneurial support and the technical skills in the financial sector from FSD Zambia to support participating entrepreneurs.

The challenge seeks to work with aspiring and early-stage entrepreneurs that are addressing gaps in financial inclusion. Aspiring participants will be required to submit applications with evidence of how their solution is addressing current challenges in the Zambian financial landscape, as identified by BongoHive and FSD Zambia. The challenges that applicants will be addressing are related to the following: savings, differently-abled citizens, investment, interoperability, financial literacy, and credit savings.

Sixty selected applicants will be invited to participate in virtual ideation sessions, following which, twenty participants will be invited to take part in 5-day virtual idea validation sprints. The challenge will have two finalists who will each receive a further 8 weeks of business development support and K20,000 worth of technical support.

”There is no better time than now to support ideas and businesses that create opportunities for economies to thrive. In the middle of a pandemic, we are certain that innovators and entrepreneurs can create solutions that are relevant to many aspects of life in Zambia and the rest of the world. FSD Zambia has a lot of experience in the financial inclusion space and our combined efforts are one huge step towards unlocking the potential that is hidden in many of our people.” BongoHive Innovation and Technology Hub Co-founder and Executive Director, Lukonga Lindunda said.

”Most of our young entrepreneurs believe they need to choose either passion or profit. The BongoHive Fintech Challenge gives them an opportunity to choose both, once they know the problem as outlined in the challenge areas, the solution is the easy part. We look forward to seeing great innovations that aim to serve and find solutions for many pressing social economic challenges that we face.” FSD Zambia – Director Digital Financial Services and Policy, Charity Chikumbi said.

The BongoHive FinTech Challenge will run from 22 June to 2 October 2020. Applications for the challenge open on 21 May 2020 and will close on 10 June 2020. Interested startups can apply here.

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