04 - 07 - 2019

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ORide, a new on-demand motorbike hailing service has launched in Lagos, Nigeria. Driven by technology, the ORide service is accessible via the OPay app - a super app with features that cater to a range of lifestyle demands including food order and delivery, utility bills payment, cash access and more. Customers who download the Opay app this July on Google Play store or iOS app store will pay only N200 for every trip they take that’s less than N2000. Get started today.

Newly created electricity company, Gridworks has made a $7.5 million investment in Mettle Solar Investments, a South African off-grid supply company that provides electricity to customers in South Africa, Namibia, Kenya and Seychelles. Mettle says the new investment will be used to scale its services to more countries such as Nigeria, Tanzania, Angola and Mozambique. This is Gridworks' first investment since it launched three weeks ago. Created by the UK’s CDC Group, Gridworks was created to invest in Africa’s electricity sector and is backed by $300 million funding.

Netflix has acquired “Mokalik”, a movie created by renowned Nigerian movie director, Kunle Afolayan. Mr Afolayan disclosed this on the sideline of the French-Nigerian Cinema Days which held between 2 and 3 July in Lagos. According to him, Netflix has “acquired ‘Mokalik’ and some other of my films”. No release date has been announced for the movie yet. The move continues Netflix’s goal to deliver original content to its African audience, and it is backed by its $15 billion budget to secure original content globally. Last year, the company made a similar approach, acquiring the movie “Lion Heart” from Genevieve Nnaji. Netflix previously also acquired licenses for movies such as October 1 (a movie by Afolayan) and the 2016 hit, the Wedding Party.

YouTube has retracted its announcement that it now offers live streaming of sports content on its platform. On Tuesday, the video streaming platform issued a press release announcing the launch of “live sport streaming” courtesy of partnerships with NBA Africa, SuperSport and other services. According to the statement, users could now watch live content such as UEFA Champions League, ABSA Premiership, La Liga, Serie A, Women’s World Cup, UFC, and AFCON. But the platform has now retracted this announcement. In a new press release issued on Wednesday, YouTube said the sports content would be offered as highlights or video-on demand instead of live streams.

Naspers has appointed Phuthi Mahanyele-Dabengwa to the newly created position of CEO Nasper South Africa. Ms Mahanyele-Dabengwa will oversee Naspers’ operations in South Africa, including ventures such as Naspers Founders and Naspers Labs. Working from Johannesburg, Ms Mahanyele-Dabengwa will report directly to Bob van Dijk, Group CEO of Naspers. This announcement comes at a time when Naspers is being criticized for reducing its commitment to South Africa. The company has equally reduced its investments across Africa and is paying more attention to its international holdings as evident by its desire to list its non-African internet assets on the Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange. Under a new company called Prosus, the Naspers holding will house assets such as Tencent, DeliveryHero, Swiggy, OLX,, PayU, and Udemy.

On the 11th of July, Techcabal is convening African governments, regulators, investors, development agencies, multinationals and entrepreneurs at TC Townhall: Renewable Energy to discuss "The Future of Africa’s Energy". We will be attempting to answer the question “How do we quickly build a modern energy infrastructure, that is affordable and provides last-mile access, using abundant renewable energy resources, in a friendly policy environment?” Register here to attend.

Application is open for the Lagos Immersion Hackathon, an initiative created by the UK's Department of International Trade (DTT) and the Innovation Corner. The hackathon is open to innovators developing solutions to some of the macroeconomic and development challenges of the African continent. Application closes on July 7, 2019.

In an interview with Microtraction, Olugbenga GB Agboola, the CEO of Nigerian payment company, Flutterwave, shared some advice for entrepreneurs looking to start their own companies.

American airplane manufacturer, Boeing will pay $100 million to the families of victims of the Ethiopian Airlines and the Lion Air plane accidents. The funds will also be used to support communities affected by these plane crashes. In the months following the Ethiopian Airlines MAX 737 plane accident which killed all 157 passengers, Boeing has taken responsibility for the two accidents; citing issues with the plane model's Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS). “We at Boeing are sorry for the tragic loss of lives in both of these accidents and these lives lost will continue to weigh heavily on our hearts and on our minds for years to come”, the company wrote yesterday.

Two Minutes with a VC: Issa Aghabi, an investment officer leading investment activities in the Middle East and North Africa at the World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation (IFC)

66% of people living in Sub-Saharan African have no bank account says Orange Digital Ventures Africa in its African Tech Scene 2019 review. The review is accompanied by a database containing resources for and about tech hubs, investors and entrepreneurs in the African tech ecosystem.

Internet TV service, Kwese Play is currently unavailable. Users of the Econet-owned service have not been able to access Kwese Play since Wednesday, July 3. An error message on the service which says “Econet no longer offers Kwese Play” has prompted concerns that Kwese Play may have actually been shutdown. The service has however issued a statement apologizing for the error and said it is “working hard to resolve it”.

Rwanda based bike hailing service SafeMotos has expanded to Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The startup has also announced it is rebranding from SafeMotos to CanGo. Following its expansion and brand changes, the company will now offer new services such as food delivery in both Congo and Rwanda.

From TechCabal

+  54gene Raises $4.5 million to Create the World’s First African DNA Biobank +  Startup Acquisitions Continue to Grow Big in Africa. What Does this Mean for VCs and Startups?

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