DAKAR, Senegal, 26 March 2019 – Two start-ups in Senegal have recently collaborated with Microsoft to grow their businesses in the Azure cloud. Microsoft, through its 4Afrika Initiative, has partnered with Weego, known locally as SunuBus, and CoinAfrique to offer technology and business support in scaling up.
“Microsoft has been operating in Senegal since 2007, and has continued to invest in the country through its 4Afrika Initiative launched in 2013,” says Muhammad Nabil, Partners & Start-ups Strategy Lead at Microsoft 4Afrika. “One of the first local projects 4Afrika supported was DARAL, a mobile solution to protect Senegalese farmers against cattle theft. We’re excited to now be working with SunuBus and CoinAfrique, two innovative start-ups that are using technology to add value to people’s lives.”
Across Africa, Microsoft is working with start-ups and start-up enablers to build a 360 degree support system, and promote innovation in fintech, healthcare, education, agritech, retail, manufacturing and government. In the last six months, 4Afrika has reached over 300 start-ups in Africa, with a focus on 65 next-generation unicorns, giving them access to the digital tools, resources and skills needed to succeed. Today, over 500,000 African SMEs are using Microsoft cloud services.
SunuBus is a collaborative transit app, designed to make travel by public transportation easier. It allows users to find buses, monitor arrivals in real-time, and share their position to assist others and earn rewards. SunuBus currently has 74 operational bus lines in Dakar. With 4Afrika support, the team are migrating their solution to the Microsoft cloud and refining their business model, to help scale across Africa and the Middle East.
Also based in Dakar, CoinAfrique is a free classifieds platform for new and used products, which allows users to make money selling what they do not use and find bargains. The app currently has over one million downloads – and the team are now looking to scale to 10 million active users across francophone Africa.
“Microsoft 4Afrika has supported CoinAfrique in getting investment-ready for series B funding, developing a data strategy for enhanced business insights, and scaling up to reach our goal of becoming the number one francophone classifieds marketplace,” says Matthias Papet, founder of CoinAfrique.
In addition to start-ups, Microsoft 4Afrika has also impacted over 25,000 partners across the continent to promote economic development in technology. In Senegal, Microsoft has worked with ADN Tech for the past two years. ADN Tech assists organisations in their digital transformation efforts, providing consulting and software solutions. With go-to-market and technical support from Microsoft, ADN tech has developed new applications in the cloud.
“Microsoft is here to support and help accelerate Senegal’s 2025 digital vision, which promotes ICT-driven development,” adds Muhammad. “By partnering with these organisations, we’re bringing digital solutions to more industries and people. Investing in start-up growth is also important to us, due to the significant role they play in job creation and using technology to help achieve sustainable development goals.”