Ecobank earmarks Rwf400 million to support start-ups

Ecobank has earmarked $500,000 (about Rwf410 million) to support startups and young innovators across the African continent.

The funds are part of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge 2017 meant to support young entrepreneurs on the continent.

However, entrepreneurs will first convince the Pan-African lender by showcasing bankable business plans and innovative solutions before they can benefit from the fund, said Ade Ayeyemi, the Ecobank Group CEO.

Ayeyemi, who was in the country last week to launch the product, said, the support is part of the bank’s strategy to   help boost Africa’s technology start-ups.

“Fintech is the future of banking; that is why we are opening our doors and vast market infrastructure to support Africa’s brightest innovators,” Ayeyemi said.

The idea is to help African start-ups to build and deploy innovative fintech and banking solutions across the continent to further boost entrepreneurship across Africa, headed.

“Rwanda being one of the fast Tech-transforming countries, we highly encourage every Rwandan entrepreneur to participate in this technology start-up challenge,” Alice Kilonzo Zulu, the Ecobank Rwanda managing director said.

“In terms of SME financing, Ecobank is keen to continue supporting viable businesses, this is why Ecobank doors are always open to support the most serious innovators, she added.

Ecobank is accepting applications at start-ups and developers in all of the 54 African countries.