3 African blockchain startups secure grant funding from UNICEF

3 African blockchain startups secure grant funding from UNICEF

Three African blockchain startups have been selected to receive grant funding from the UNICEF Venture Fund.

Looking to support early-stage ventures in solving local and global challenges the UNICEF Venture Fund is investing in seven blockchain startups in six countries after receiving 450 submissions from 77 countries.

The startups will receive up to $100k in grant seed funding. Two of the startups are from Kenya and the other is from Rwanda.

The Kenyan investees are Grassroots Economics, which runs programs that empower marginalized communities to take charge of their own livelihoods and economic future, and Kotani Pay, a technology stack that enables blockchain protocols, apps, and blockchain fintech companies to integrate seamlessly into local payment channels.

Rwanda’s Leaf which offers virtual banking services to vulnerable populations crossing borders, connecting people to their own savings conveniently and affordably is the third African startup selected for the investment.

UNICEF Ventures lead Sunita Grote speaking on the investment said that the investment is necessary to curb the effect of the COVID-19 and make digital solutions accessible.

“COVID-19 has impacted children and their communities, and many around the world will continue to see their lives disrupted significantly. We can see how important inclusive and affordable digital solutions are, including those that open access to financial systems and services.

“As we look into building back better, we need to tap into and support innovators and problem solvers to ensure systems are transparent, efficient, and decentralized — and that they include the traditionally underserved,” said Sunita Grote.