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Good morning!

Take a moment to send love and light to the people in South Africa who have been enduring escalating power outages and the mounting chaos surrounding the selection of a new CEO of Eskom, the country’s electricity provider.  

After whittling down 150 candidates to three, Eskom board’s chosen CEO candidate was rejected. Find out why.

In today’s edition

  • Kenya signs $60 million deal with the US
  • Nigeria pushes for tech startups listing on NGX
  • Starlink’s African challenge
  • The World Wide Web3
  • Event: Moonshot Conference
  • Job opportunities 


Kenya signs $60 million deal with the US

Ruto and the US embassy representatives
Image source: The US embassy in Kenya

The United States Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) has inked a $60 million deal with Kenya. This agreement, known as the “Kenya Urban Mobility and Growth Threshold Program,” will support four mobility projects: the Integrated Transport Planning project, the First and Last Mile Connections project, the Detailed Land Use project, and the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project.

If this feels like déjà vu, you might be recalling the time in March when the European Union (EU) and Kenya entered a Ksh 50 billion ($378 million) financing agreement to integrate zero-emission electric (BRT) buses into the public transport network in Nairobi, the capital city.

Much like that agreement, this recent deal with the US will also finance the purchase of climate-friendly vehicles powered by electricity, hybrid, and biodiesel for the BRT network. This announcement comes on the heels of the African Climate Summit, recently held in Nairobi. During the week-long summit, Kenyan President William Ruto showcased electric vehicles by driving an electric car, accompanied by an all-electric fleet for his motorcade consisting of electric motorcycles from local electric mobility startups.

Kenya is going green fast. The country is committed to transitioning fully to zero-emission vehicles by 2040. So it has been welcoming a  lot of mobility startups that are providing motorcycles, cars, shuttles, and buses. This includes Roam, Ampersand, Spiro, KiriEVs, and others. There are also charging stations, and battery swap stations popping up across the country. Later in the year, the Kenyan government is set to publish an e-mobility policy that will set the framework for the development of the required infrastructure.

Zoom out: Some other East African countries are taking this zero-emission challenge just as seriously as Kenya. Rwanda for instance has tax breaks for purchases of electric vehicles. However, per Ventures Africa, South Africa is the current leading market for EVs in the continent.

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Nigeria pushes for tech startups listing on NGX

Image source: TechCabal

The Nigerian government, through the Ministry of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy, plans to team up with the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) to encourage startups to go public on the new NGX Technology Board.

Sidebar: The NGX Technology Board is a board on the Nigerian Stock Exchange tailored for tech-based companies to list and raise capital from retail and institutional investors.Like the foreign board, National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation (NASDAQ), The board was introduced months ago to give tech startups access to the exchange with less stringent requirements. The board also aims to replicate the conditions that attract Nigerian tech companies to foreign initial public offerings (IPOs) and, in doing so, provide entry and exit opportunities for local investors.

However, local startups still prefer foreign exchanges. This preference is due to these exchanges offering access to foreign retail and institutional investors who often have a larger investment appetite. For example, startups like OPay and Flutterwave are seeking listings in foreign markets while primarily operating in Nigeria and other African markets. The Minister of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy, Bosun Tijani, called for more investments in these startups, saying Nigeria has been too cosy with oil, and it’s time to spice things up and boost productivity in other sectors.

He stated that his ministry will work to make this happen by creating fintech-friendly regulations, facilitating access to funding, improving digital infrastructure, and supporting the export of tech products and services—all factors that will enhance startups’ scalability and profitability. The NGX has also promised to further soften listing rules and improve the board for startups.

Unlock your startup potential

Grow your networks, gain visibility, and secure funding for your early-stage tech startup. Apply for this year’s MEST Africa Challenge #pitchcompetition and unlock the next stage of your startup’s growth.  Apply by 9th October 2023.

Apply today! 

TC Insights

Starlink’s African challenge

TC Insights graph
Image source: TC Insights

In January 2023, Starlink, the satellite internet service owned by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, commenced operations in Nigeria, marking a significant milestone as the first African country to receive the service. Since then,  it has expanded its reach to four additional African nations, including Rwanda, Mozambique, Mauritius, and Sierra Leone, with plans to launch in nineteen more African countries by 2024.

Mobile internet penetration in Africa remains at 43%, below the global average of 66%. Starlink’s emergence in Africa heralded promises of broader connectivity with download speeds up to 220Mbps. However, real-world performance is subject to variables such as latency and weather conditions. 

Recent Q2 data from Ookla, an internet and connectivity intelligence firm, paints a nuanced picture of Starlink’s global performance. Starlink has demonstrated promising download speeds in Africa, but its upload speeds present a mixed scenario. Starlink’s median upload speed of 13.72Mbps in Nigeria surpasses the combined average of 10.6Mbps from other providers, enhancing its value proposition. Conversely, in Rwanda, Starlink’s upload speed lags behind other ISPs, averaging just 6.88Mbps compared to 10.05Mbps. Ookla observes that Starlink’s upload speeds generally align with the company’s expectations, falling within the 5 to 20 Mbps range. This area remains a focal point for improvement if Starlink aims to solidify its presence in Africa.

Whether Starlink is poised to become the preferred internet provider for Africans seems unlikely in the near term. Ookla noted, “Satellite-based services can play a crucial role in bridging the digital divide by extending internet reach beyond existing fixed networks, especially in areas where fiber deployed isn’t commercially viable, offering competitive speeds.

“However, its high equipment cost might limit Starlink’s customer adoption in the near future. Instead, the operator can address enterprise customers as the satellite already serves a range of enterprise verticals, such as banking, logistics, and transport.”

As Starlink continues its expansion across Africa, its performance metrics indicate both promise and challenges. Its ability to address issues like upload speeds and cost-effectiveness will be crucial in determining its long-term impact on internet accessibility in Africa.

Get all our reports here and watch videos from our events. Got any research requests? Send them to us here.

US-West Africa Tech Challenge

Working at the intersection of tech and challenges of disinformation? Tune in to the U.S.-West Africa Tech Challenge this Thursday, September 28. The event will also announce up to three organizations that will receive funding totaling $250,000 USD to help advance their work addressing disinformation and extremism. Find more information and register here!

Crypto Tracker

The World Wide Web3



Coin Name

Current Value



Bitcoin $26,466

– 0.38%

+ 1.45%

Ether $1,586

– 0.29%

– 3.95%



– 0.41%

– 3.62%

Cardano $0.2447

– 0.44%

– 7.78%

* Data as of 12:16 AM WAT, September 25, 2023.


The Moonshot Conference

Tickets are still selling out fast for the gathering of the most audacious players in Africa’s tech ecosystem.

You and your friends can get an exclusive discount to  secure your seats if you haven’t yet.

Get your ticket today.

Job opportuinities

Written by –

Ngozi Chukwu & Stephen Agwaibor

Edited by – Noah Banjo