Riby, a fintech, picks ticket to 1776 Challenge Cup World Finals in New York

Fintech startup, Riby (owned by Finance Life Technologies), has made it to the world finals of 1776 Challenge Cup. The event to select Nigeria’s candidate for the 1776 Challenge was hosted by Passion incubator-owned Leadspace, a co-working space in Ojodu-Berger, Lagos, on Friday August 25. Fourteen  startups across Nigeria pitched at the event.

The 1776 Challenge Cup is a global competition for the world’s most promising startups tackling complex,  regulated challenges. The competition started four years ago, to discover the most promising and highly scalable startups poised to solve complex challenges across borders, regulated industries and emerging technologies. Competing startups are expected to share their vision on a global stage, engage with industry leaders and win grand prizes.

A cross-section of the audience

Riby was picked for its impressive finance solution, which is highly scalable and solves the challenge of savings for small-scale merchants, while availing savers with credit facilities from a wide range of lenders, where possible. It also provides various medium to long-term investment options. Picking up Lagos’ winning ticket guarantees the team of Salami Abolore, Founder/CEO an all-expense paid trip to New York, to partake in the world finals.

Delivery Bros, a delivery app came second place. Delivery Bros’ Animashaun Abiodun, Co-founder revealed their next step to eliminate returned and missed deliveries through their IoT innovation, Lockerbros. The app is set to expand to 5 African cities in the next 12 years. For its efforts, Deliverybros got three months of flexible workspace in all Leadspace facilities across Nigeria. Third place went edtech startup, DavtonLearn. This startup provides online video learning for professionals and corporate institutions. As third-place winner, DavtonLearn earned 2 months of flexible workspace in all Leadspace facilities across Nigeria.

Other startups which pitched included Comestibles Nigeria, a food and fresh grocery website based in Ibadan and delivering food from restaurants around Ibadan to users; ArtshopNG which connects makers of art products to interested buyers; Doctorshub Nigeria which connects Nigerians with offline hospitals and offers free consultation services; Hubrif, a short film distribution platform which is fostering a community of young African filmmakers; Ecofuture Nigeria, a waste recycling company which deploys IoT to collect waste with its smart bins.

The following startups also made it to the pitch: FLOWES, an early-warning flood detection system to forecast flood imminence and disseminate data to inhabitants of flood-prone areas; Suvenia.com which allows users to create, sell and buy promotional and personalized products and merchandise; Voucher Pay Limited, a digital currency platform where users use codes to execute transactions; Legit Car, which combats car theft by helping with stolen vehicle tracking and recovery and Freshmarte Global Limited, a platform which connects small holder farmers to organizations which might be looking for raw materials and also provides support services for the execution of sourcing contracts. According to organizers, one startup did not show up at the pitch.

In a chat with Outrepreneurs, Riby’s Salami Abolore said he was excited his startup won, since it was a good validation that he and his team were working on something important.

“We are encouraged to continue to intensify our efforts. This needs to be done. Our people need better access to finance (including everyone I know) and we all need to know and apply better ways to manage our finance and build lasting wealth”, he said.

When asked to cite his startup’s challenges, Abolore (whose experience over the last twelve years has been across tech, business automation, revenue collection/payment processing, management consulting and media) mentioned the following: getting the best skills at the right pay grade; raising the right capital at the right time; scaling adoption across various user groups; so much training required and a lot of offline work still needed, to get tech products to the right amount of user-base who needed them.

All Participants had just two minutes to pitch their startup to a team of judges which included Uche Okafor, Operations Manager at leading e-hailing platform, Taxify and Oluyomi Ojo, CEO of Nigeria’s first online printing company, Printivo.

At a side-chat (which was part of the event), Printivo’s Ojo gave insights on finding the right team. He likened the co-founder relationship to a marriage, where each co-founder must have distinct qualities essential for the business to thrive, that the other does not have. According to Ojo, a co-founder should be able to execute relevant tasks, without a reminder from the founder. This shows a passion for the business.

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PHOTOS: Williams Ojo/Outrepreneurs & 1776.vc

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Chiamaka Akuba25 Posts

Chiamaka Akuba is a graduate of Mass Communication of the University of Lagos, Nigeria. She is passionate about emerging markets and entrepreneurship and is actively working with the industry. She loves her conversations challenging and can’t help laughing when you call her ‘Honourable Writer of the Federal Republic'. Chiamaka is a Staff Writer at Outrepreneurs.

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