…as Vazi pushes for increased female representation in Tech
By Gabriel Olawale
Ghanaian startup, Bare, has emerged the overall winner at the Unhacked Virtual Pitch Competition by Vazi Legal. Bare uses artificial intelligence (AI) to diagnose skin issues and give product recommendations for black men and women globally.
The UnHacked pitch competition was organised by Vazi Legal where African-focused technology start-ups pitched their companies for a chance to emerge as winners.
Speaking during the innovative virtual pitch competition, Vazi Legal co-founder Modupe Odele said: “Having been rendering legal services in the space for about two years, we thought it was a way for us not only to give back but also to interact with the tech community across the continent. One of the things important to us was the kind of founders we wanted to hear from. We wanted a diversity of representation in terms of gender. We are very committed to seeing more women in tech so each applicant needed to have at least one female cofounder who has at least 10% ownership in the start-up.”
Pitching the Bare startup during the virtual competition, CEO and co-founder Abimbola-Kofoworola Oladeji said “we are using technology to diagnose and improve treatment of skin issues for black men and women globally. Black people spend upwards of $5B yearly on skin care products we are looking to capture 5% of that market starting from Nigeria and Ghana.”
The competition’s first runner up, Jidi Trust from Ghana offers offers local language (Twi and English) financial literacy courses and digital bookkeeping for SME businesses with minimal charges each time the app is used. Coming third place was Truvel from Zimbabwe. With a mission to build a technology platform to make road trips in African countries cheaper, faster and more convenient, Tuverl aims to reach 10,000+ consumers over the next 5 years.
The overall winner takes home $1,000 cash prize, 20 hours of high-level legal advisory amongst others. UnHacked by Vazi received 143 applications for over 10 African countries and eight finalists were eventually selected to pitch to judges Wiza Jalakasi for Kenya, Tiyani Majoko from South Africa and Tejumade Afonja from Nigeria. Other finalists at the pitch competition were Student Build from Nigeria, Kazi App from Kenya, Dorcspark Drones from Ghana, Next Wear Tech Hub from Nigeria, and Adannar from Nigeria.
“In selecting the finalists, we considered various factors including marketing readiness and technology fit. As an unconventional legal services firm, delivering this virtual pitch competition is on brand for us as we continue to canvas increased support services to ensure that the tech ecosystem across Africa becomes more robust and self-sustaining,” said Fikayo Obadofin, Startup Advisor at Vazi Legal.
Vazi Legal Business Attorneys is Africa’s top innovation driven law firm that represents investors, startups, and technology-enabled enterprises at all stages of development. Its team members are qualified in multiple jurisdictions and are based in Lagos, London, New York, Johannesburg and Nairobi. Legal Trunk is the company’s recently launched service in Nigeria and the United States to democratize access and provide affordable legal services to SMEs.