Africa’s Unicorns and Startup Ecosystem in the Era of Artificial Intelligence Summary


Africa remains home to a dynamic and growing digital ecosystem, with unprecedented growth in tech innovation, influx of international capital, and multiple large fundraises and exits in the last decade. The growth of digital entrepreneurship on the continent is fostering venture capital and innovation ecosystems that are supporting and nurturing unicorns as they adapt and innovate.

Venture capital and private equity investments in Africa have hit unprecedented levels in recent years, with the continent transitioning from having not a single unicorn to seven startups worth over $1 billion in less than a decade. By the same token, across the world, artificial intelligence (AI) is fundamentally altering the way people live and conduct business.

Given agelong skills shortages on the continent, the data governance imperative has never been more important, especially given the nuanced and dynamic nature of the ongoing AI revolution. African governments and development partners must continue to nurture the digital ecosystem, while also developing appropriate regulatory frameworks for data governance and technology partnerships. This is key for supporting tech entrepreneurs on the continent to ensure their competitive edge in sustainable investment attraction is not eroded.

Our esteemed panel of experts will unpack this and provide actionable insights to help key stakeholders decipher the key issues.

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