* Data as of 05:00 AM WAT, March 10, 2023.
Swiss-based web3-focused VC firm Crypto Celley VC wants to make Africa a Web 3 powerhouse. Nodo News reports on how the firm is investing in Web 3 startups, building its own incubator, and organising events to boost Africa’s $127 million Web 3 ecosystem.
Unstoppable Wow3, a diversity and web3 education group, yesterday announced a commitment to educate six million African women on Web 3. ThisDay reports that the group has partnered with 19 companies across Africa, including Polygon Labs and Chipper Cash, to provide a wide assortment of educational streams, programmes, learning materials, in-person events, and online courses.
The blowback from FTX is touching non-crypto companies as Silvergate Capital, holding company of Silvergate bank, announces shutdown. TechCrunch reports that the 30-year-old company faced a financial crisis after FTX’s collapse last year. The company is reportedly facing an investigation from the fraud unit of the US Department of Justice for its accounts which are tied to FTX’s holdings.
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QUICK FIRE 🔥 WITH ZIKOKO
Zikoko describes itself as the amplifier of the voice of the Nigerian youth. The publication drives conversation and inspires what young Nigerians watch, experience, laugh and obsess over next, across pop culture, lifestyle, relationships, food, commerce and more. Much like younger siblings, Zikoko is now touting a website rebrand similar to its senior by three years TechCabal’s 2021 rebrand—come on Chelsea 😏.
Explain your job to a five-year-old
Zikoko tells everyone interesting stories about what young people are doing. If you want to hear about how cool kids are spending money, or what films your friends watch, then you’ll read Zikoko. But not until you’re much older. Like, way way older.
Okay, why are you here?
This isn’t how Quick Fire works. You’re supposed to be nicer. But, well, I rebranded my website. And I did it to stay fresh and relevant. It’s 2023. I want my website to reflect the new age of Nigerian youth.
What’s so fresh about your new website ?😒
We’ve organised all our content better. As a tech media company, you should of course know the importance of positioning. Our readers can now see all our categories at the top of the page. We also put trending articles on the home page, so they can see which articles are trending and get the hot gist faster. We know you can’t relate since you only publish boring news.
What else is new? Other than your snark?
We also changed how our readers can watch videos. It’s a lot easier to find our many hilarious shows now.
There’s a new newsletter widget too. We’re super excited about this one because instead of subscribing to all of them without knowing exactly what you’re signing up for, our readers get to choose and pick their faves.
Are you changing the type of content you offer? Like, you know, useful content?
Sigh. Our content is useful. There’s Naira Life, which shares how people relate with money. And Love Currency—stories of how people in relationships interact with money.
So it’s only money you talk about? Do you have serious conversations?
But, why are you such an old millennial? So money, pop culture and relationships aren’t serious? Well, we have Citizen to talk about politics and teach young people how it affects them. We’ve also got Aluta and Chill, talking about university students and their challenges. The Pop category won’t go anywhere either; we’ll never stop talking about Nigerian pop culture.
So why should TechCabal readers visit Zikoko?
We’ve got everything TechCabal often denies its audience of: fun! Besides that, techies will also find that Zikoko is at the intersection of how young people relate to the tech world. That’s why Hustleprint talks about young people and their quest for pocket-filling jobs, or how Abroad Life talks about people who have moved abroad and how they’re finding it.
Like TechCabal, everybody is welcome on Zikoko!
FINTECHS FLOCK AGAINST FRAUD
Here’s some trivia for you. If a confederation is a collective term for states, what’s a collection of fintechs called?
Everyone loves an unlikely alliance story, and Nigerian fintechs are forming one.
Yesterday, business publication Semafor Africa announced that a flock of Nigeria’s largest fintech startups are creating a joint strategy to tackle fraudulent transactions within their networks.
Tagged “Project Radar”—way to go on the naming scheme—the companies will share details, including government and banking identity data, of suspected criminals. The project will also see to the creation of a blacklist register.
Last Monday, representatives of fintechs including Kuda, Branch, and Cowrywise reportedly joined a meeting where Flutterwave’s CEO, Olugbenga Agboola, played a leading role. Sources close to the case report that the flock is also looking to integrate its plans with the existing fraud reporting system being employed by the commercial and central banks of Nigeria.
This news comes days after TechPoint Africa reported that Fluttwave had suffered a hack that cost the fintech $6.3 million. While Flutterwave promptly denied the breach, stating that it was simply “investigating security concerns”, court documents released online show that the bank is pushing a court order against 27 commercial banks with accounts the funds were allegedly transferred to.
Zoom out: Data breaches in Nigerian banks have been on the rise this year, with Nigeria’s Nigeria Data Protection Bureau, in February, announcing probes of two commercial banks for data breaches. Across the continent, the central banks of Zambia, South Africa, and The Gambia have all fallen victim to hacks within the past year, while commercial banks in Angola and Morocco also report hacks.
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ANDELA ACQUIRES QUALIFIED
Andela has acquired a 100% stake in Qualified, an assessment platform that certifies top engineering talents. The deal, which was finalised at an undisclosed sum, will add about 3.6 million engineering talents to Andela’s global community. These talents were previously users of Codewars, an online community run by Qualified that enables technical talents to compete among themselves and develop practical coding skills through gamified challenges.
In a statement shared with TechCabal, Andela’s CEO and co-founder, Jeremy Johnson, expressed excitement about Andela’s growing ability to find and qualify talents. “With the Qualified acquisition, Andela expands and accelerates our ability to source and expertly assess talent,” he said.
This will be Andela’s first publicly announced acquisition, and it comes on the back of the company’s renewed focus on senior developers. Backed by over $381 million in VC funding, Andela has grown to support vibrant technical talent communities in over 170 countries globally. Notably, the company has a focus on emerging markets like Nigeria, where it first began operations in 2014.
Speaking to the possibilities that the deal brings, CEO and co-founder of Qualified, Jake Hoffner, maintained that the expanded Andela product will allow companies to hire software engineers through processes that will reveal what their on-the-job performance would be.
EVENTS: TECHCABAL AT 10
Here’s a list of all the Twitter Spaces we’ll be holding to celebrate our 10th-year anniversary. Links are coming soon.
- March 14—Beyond Funding: Meet the team leading TechCabal’s newsroom. Why is TechCabal telling the kinds of stories we are telling now, and how this thinking has influenced our expansion drive? How is TechCabal’s editorial leadership driving this?
- March 16—Building newsletters readers want. How has TechCabal grown to build seven newsletter products, and what drove this growth? How does TechCabal measure success when it comes to its newsletter products, and what are its plans?
- March 21—Meet the team telling African tech stories that matter. TechCabal captures the players, human impact and business of tech in Africa. We provide the content, reporting, data, and context to help the world understand how tech is changing Africa. Who are the journalists doing all of this important work?
- March 23—What is the future of tech in Africa? In the last 10 years, the African tech ecosystem has evolved quickly. We know this firsthand at TechCabal. What does the future look like? Join us for an insightful conversation with Ola Brown, Stephen Deng, Hope Ditlhakanyane, and Ngozi Dozie where we answer these questions.
- March 30—The role of the media in covering African tech. How can the media help Africa’s developing tech ecosystem? What responsibility does the media owe the ecosystem, and what can the media expect in return? Should the media only cover good stories?
Written by – Timi Odueso
Edited by – Kelechi Njoku
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