US-based payment network, Stellar, is having a Build Challenge to encourage creativity and technical development in the Stellar ecosystem, and all developers in Africa are invited to participate. The Challenge is in four categories and a total of more than 2 billion lumens (lumens are bitcoin-like virtual currency) which is equivalent to $3 million will be given to the winners on a quarterly basis.

Community members have already started building interesting projects and tools for developers. Some of these projects include an indexer to produce custom visualisations of the Stellar network in Kibana, a tool to send lumens via Slack messages, an iOS wallet for lumens protected with two-factor authentication, and a real-time dashboard of transactions, ledgers and statistics of the Stellar network.

Here’s a quote from Stellar co-founder and CTO, Jed McCaleb regarding the Challenge – “With every visit to West Africa, we’re continually impressed by the talented tech communities we’ve come across. Our goal with the Stellar Build Challenge is for local developers across West Africa and elsewhere to use Stellar’s open financial platform to build applications that serve their audiences. We’re excited to work with these communities, and to see the innovative results!”

The four categories of the Build Challenge are anchors, applications, exchanges, and first-time submissions and they come with their respective prizes.

Anchors are banks, licensed money-service providers, or mobile money operators that accept deposits, issue credits, and honour withdrawals on the Stellar network. The entries in this category will be evaluated based on usage and uptake. Winners of the anchors category will be awarded annually, and there will be four prizes, ranging from 22 million lumens to 55 million lumens.

As for exchanges, an exchange is a platform that supports lumen trading. Entries will be evaluated by the lumen volume on the qualifying exchange. Winners of the exchanges category will be awarded annually, and there will be four prizes, ranging from 5 million lumens to 33 million lumens.

The applications category is divided into three subcategories – wallets, most active forum dedicated to Stellar, and most innovative applications – and it’s focused on guiding development. Because this category is about quality, award recipients will be determined by a panel of community members. Winners of the application category will be awarded quarterly, and there will be multiple prizes for each subcategory, ranging from 2.7 million lumens to 11 million lumens.

The first-time submissions category will encourage developers that are new to the Stellar ecosystem to build, each first-time submission from a unique GitHub account and will be awarded 200K lumens. Participants can only receive the first-time submission award once (because, duh).

Submissions for the first part of the Stellar Build Challenge will open on Thursday, September 1, 2016  and close on Tuesday, September, 20, 2016 at midnight. The first round of winners will be announced on October 1, 2016.

If you’re interested in participating in the Challenge, register here.

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