ROCKY HILL, Conn., May 31, 2018 – Connecticut Innovations (CI), the leading source of financing and ongoing support for Connecticut’s innovative, growing companies, today announced the winners of VentureClash’s pitch event in Lagos. VentureClash, Connecticut’s global venture challenge, has expanded its reach to Africa in its third year. The two-day tech fair invited promising companies from Africa to compete for a semifinalist spot in VentureClash along with a $150,000 grant from Connecticut Innovations.
Eleven companies competed in Lagos on May 23, 2018, for a chance to ultimately win $1.5 million in the VentureClash finals held in Connecticut. Of the 11 invited to pitch, three were given awards based on their merit.
One first-place winner received a $150,000 investment award, a fast pass to the semifinalist round of VentureClash and a $5,000 grant to visit Connecticut in August:
- CompareIn Ltd.—CompareIn’s free and unbiased online technology insurance distribution system shortens the insurance buying process by providing a list of insurance quotes from different companies based on the user’s vehicle specifications.
Two companies each received a fast pass to the semifinalist round of VentureClash and a $5,000 grant to visit Connecticut in August:
- Social Lender Inc.—Social Lender helps financial institutions offer microcredit based on social reputation. Social Lender uses its own proprietary algorithm to perform an audit of social media and other related platforms to give a Social Reputation Score to each user.
- Amplified Payment Systems Ltd.—Amplified Payment Systems is building a new platform for distributing and enhancing access to financial services in Africa by leveraging social messaging.
“This year we were very excited to expand the boundaries of VentureClash and visit Nigeria,” said Matt McCooe, CEO of Connecticut Innovations. “Our trip to Lagos was incredibly rewarding, and we look forward to building relationships with companies in the ecosystem in the future.”
The other competitors included:
- Advancio Interactive Ltd.—Advancio Interactive’s COVr branchless is an agency banking solution that allows banks to carry out financial services anywhere in the world.
- BeepTool Communication and Integrated Services Ltd.—BeepTool has a vision to make communication and financial services accessible to anyone, anywhere.
- FINT Technology Africa—FINT is Nigeria’s first loan marketplace for consumer and business opportunity loans.
- Peachwater Consulting—Manufactured by Peachwater Consulting, Powerstove is a smokeless cookstove with a self-powered IoT monitoring system using 70 percent less biomass, allowing users to cook food five times faster.
- Sattrak Services Ltd.—Developed by Sattrak, Mobilityplus is a technology marketplace with e-commerce capabilities for delivering on-demand transport mobility products and services.
- Software Business Solutions Consulting—This management consulting and technology firm has the simple goal of driving business value and partnership by delivering differently.
- Solynta—Solynta’s mobile phone platform for primary healthcare services in Nigeria is like having a doctor and hospital in your pocket.
- Virtual Farm—Virtual Farm offers the first digital farm in Africa, enabling users to buy seed, sow, nurture and harvest online or through SMS codes.
As we look ahead, 10 early-stage companies in digital health, financial technology, insurance technology and the Internet of Things will advance to the October 18 finals event at the Yale School of Management in New Haven, CT.
First-round applications are scheduled to close on Friday, June 8. For more information on qualifications, requirements, guidelines and application, visit www.ventureclash.com.
VentureClash is Connecticut Innovations’ global investment challenge focused on early-stage companies. The challenge identifies promising companies in digital health, financial technology, insurance technology and the Internet of Things that will receive investments from a $5 million award pool and the support of resources around Connecticut. To learn more, visit www.ventureclash.com.
About Connecticut Innovations Inc.
Connecticut Innovations is Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm, providing funding and strategic support to early-stage technology companies. In addition to equity investments, CI provides grants that support innovation and collaboration through CTNext, and connections to its well-established network of partners and professionals. To learn more, visit www.ventureclash.com.
Contact: Lauren Carmody
Director of Marketing Communications
Phone: (860) 258-7829