Africa Moves’ Big Summit is the defining event for Africa’s development and the largest African event dedicated to tech and innovation. After extending the application deadline for the mega event to May 19, 2019, Africa Moves has assembled a multidisciplinary committee who will work diligently to review each nomination and make final selections.

The selection committee will sift through the scores of submissions and whittle them down to 100 startups. The members of the committee are people who understand the startup business from the ground up. Moreover, these people know the challenges African startups face.

Selected startups will receive an all-inclusive benefits package: flights, accommodation, meals, pass for the event, and a turnkey connected booth. These startups will also pitch in front of 100 investors. Moreover, they will present at the event and/or in front of potential customers or partners.

These are the ten members of the selection committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit:

1. Rodrigue FouafouMeet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Known across social media as “Africa Connects,” Rodrigue Fouafou will head the team as President of the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves. As an entrepreneur and investor, Rodrigue Fouafou is also the Co-Founder and CEO of HartNamtemah and COO of OASIS Africa Innovation.

As the African Startup Ecosystem develops and expands, the Africa Moves initiative is a key element in fostering the growth of Africa. Rodrigue is a great believer in Africa, one reason he joined Africa Moves.

2. Saloua Abdel Khalak (Director of the St’ART UP LAB)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Abdel Khalak is a senior coach and a mentor specialized in the digital and cultural industries. With the strong belief that the digital economy is one of the most important topics that will contribute to Tunisia’s growth, she has dedicated her life to promoting culture through digital innovation.

Today, Saloua is focused on empowering young entrepreneurs willing to conquer the world with state-of-the-art innovations and projects incubated within the St’ART UP LAB.

3. Mohamed JomniMeet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

President of the Coordination Committee of Africa Moves, Mohamed Jomni is the Co-Founder of Accelerate Africa Tunisia. Aside these, Mohamed Jomni is also a sales and marketing specialist who has worked both in Qatar and Tunisia for international digital and telecommunications companies. His experience and skills within the digital industry, combined with his dedication to the youth of his continent have led him to found Accelerate Africa in Tunisia. It has equally led him to take part in the organization of THE African to contribute to the African ecosystem’s rise.

4. Amina Djirdeh (Equity Research Associate at iA)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Amina Djirdeh is an “afroptimist” with extensive experience in equity research, investment banking, and other areas of finance. Skilled in methods of investment analysis, transactions, and other financial concepts, she builds financial models for a living and is an asset for all startups willing to rise internationally.

5. Haymée I Perez Cogle (Local Leader at Founder Institute Luanda)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

A senior business executive with extensive experience in sales and business development, Haymée is passionate about Digital Transformation in Angola and Africa in general. Her commitment is the promotion of the startup ecosystem in Angola. Haymée is also interested in emerging technologies and early-stage startups. Dynamic and resilient, with strong leadership and team-building skills, Haymée is customer and sales orientated with a strategic business vision and a broad knowledge in IT technologies.

A pioneer in the promotion of the Internet and new information technologies in Angola, she is also the co-founder of the 1st ISP in Angola and has over 20 years of experience in the telecom and IT industry. Haymée is a strong advocate for women’s inclusion in technology.

6. Murielle Diaco (Founder and CEO of DJOUMAN)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Murielle is the founder and CEO of DJOUMAN, one of the leading platforms catalyzing innovation for sustainability in Africa. With a background in computer science and engineering, she worked for more than 6 years in the financial industry. In 2013, she decided to engage more actively in sustainable development in Africa.

Coming from Cote d’Ivoire, she wanted her work to positively impact the continent. She undertook an MBA, after which she turned to entrepreneurship. In January 2016, she launched the platform “DJOUMAN,” with the goal of providing effective means to the people who are building tomorrow’s Africa to grow their projects.

The platform works with innovative startups and SMEs to help them transform their potential into success. Murielle facilitates connections with the right experts, business partners and investors. DJOUMAN’s projects include renewable energy and waste management. Other projects equally include sustainable agriculture, health and education.

7. Naji Bouchiba (Founder of UX AFRICA and Co-Founder of Palpit Games and Userthink)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Specializing in innovation, user experience, cognitive psychology and the sociology of uses, Naji delved into entrepreneurship in 2015 by creating the video game company Palpit games with 4 partners.

In 2017, along with 3 partners, he created Userthink. This helped to supplement the incubators of innovation at the regional, national and international level. Since 2018, he has been working on establishing UX AFRICA. UX AFRICA aims at evangelizing user-centric design methods across all African countries and also, to train and support UX professionals.

8. Elise Shadman (International Program Manager, Schoolab)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Entrepreneurship is the way society can solve its new global issues. After travelling across a few continents, Elise discovered how entrepreneurs from around the world have the power to create positive change in the economy and across ecology and social issues.

Thanks to her background in marketing, sales, and finance, she now helps – via Schoolab – startups that are willing to make a difference.

9. Hauwa Yabani (CEO of Abuja Technology Village)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Hauwa Yabani manages a portfolio of a broad range of programs. These programs include master planning, large-scale infrastructure and real estate, enterprise development, human capital mobilization and development. She equally manages the deployment of operating frameworks, processes and procedures for the establishment of a Science and Technology Park with Special Economic Zone status in Nigeria.

She holds key positions and has served on boards of organizations. This includes the International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation, and the Abuja Enterprise Agency. Hauwa is the World Business Angels Investment Forum’s High Commissioner for Nigeria; a Nigeria Leadership Initiative – Yale Fellow; and the founder of an Angel Network, a non-governmental initiative that presently focuses on youth empowerment and a women-focused investment platform.

10. Thameur Hemdane (Founder of Afrikwity)Meet the Startup Selection Committee for Africa Moves’ Big Summit

Thameur is a pioneer in the development of crowdfunding in Africa. He is the founder of Afrikwity, an equity crowdfunding platform that connects investors to African startups. He’s also the chairman of FPAM (Financement Participatif Afrique & Méditerranée), the professional body engaged in promoting crowdfunding across Africa. Thameur previously held management positions in strategy consulting firms and financial services.

Eligibility criteria for applying

To qualify for Africa Moves’ Big Summit, startups must meet the following criteria:

  • Startup company must be legally registered in Africa or founded and managed by a natural person from the African diaspora.
  • Startup company must be more than 3 years old (as of their official incorporation date).
  • The startup must be generating revenue
  • Ownership of the startup must be in majority detained by a natural person(s).
  • The product(s) sample or design displayed during the call for projects must be applicable to the entire African continent.
  • Teams participating in the call for projects must at least speak French or English fluently. Applications in both English and French are accepted.
  • This call for projects does not give preference to any specific industry as long as it is innovative and related to the field of technology and/or sustainable development.

Every year, Africa Moves showcases new countries and their connection to Africa. The extension of the deadline is, therefore, an opportunity for startups to apply for Africa Moves’ Big Summit.


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