Ghana Tech Lab in partnership with GIZ’s AI and technology entrepreneurship initiatives of “FAIR Forward” and Make-IT in Africa and IBM is excited to announce the launch of the Africa AI Accelerator Program 2020 to support the scaling of the next generation of Africa’s AI start-ups.
“Fair Forward” and “Make-IT in Africa” are projects implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to promote AI technology and digital innovations respectively.
The Africa AI Accelerator has been designed by Ghana Tech Lab (GTL) to promote local innovations in the field of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data usage.
The first cohort will support 10 AI startups from Ghana, South Africa, Rwanda, and Uganda with program partners being GIZ and IBM.
Artificial intelligence offers new opportunities in developing and emerging countries to overcome obstacles and achieve the SDGs. For example, AI can help agriculture automatically detect plant diseases or provide local digital companies with new tools. Yet, local AI innovation to solve local problems currently lacks the needed support. Developing and emerging countries are therefore at risk of lagging behind in the use and development of AI or becoming dependent on leading AI nations.
It has become clear that without an intentional approach towards building necessary capacity, technology and data to train AI, developing countries may fail to take advantage of the enormous benefits of an AI oriented local economy.
The Program has been structured to provide startups with technical product development and business development support through a blended accelerator program with a virtual and physical interface. Customized to boost collaboration between startups and corporates, commercial partners, and investors, participating startups will receive support to meet clear growth aspirations through measurable targets setting.
The 6 months long program, will be anchored on tailored support and one-on-one coaching aimed at strengthening the business and technical capacity of participating entrepreneurs.
The Africa AI Accelerator program is geared to be a turning point for AI startups in Africa, building innovative AI solutions for the development of the continent.