Injini, is Africa’s EdTech Accelerator & Think Tank.
Injini exists for the sole purpose of improving sub-Saharan Africa.
UVU Africa, previously known as the Cape Innovation and technology Initiative (CiTi) is known as Africa’s oldest tech incubator. Working with government, academia, business and society, UVU Africa promotes the inclusive growth of the digital economy.
Injini, established in 2017, was born as Africa’s EdTech specialised accelerator as part of CiTi. Technology has the power to transform education. UVU Africa is positioned to support and encourage startups that are looking to impact and change the education system across the continent.
Injini’s mission is to increase the quality, access and relevance of education throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
Injini comes closer to achieving its mission by empowering and supporting educational technologies (EdTech), harnessing the power of innovation and promoting evidence-driven decision making by education stakeholders.
From late 2017 through 2020, Injini successfully incubated 29 early-stage EdTech startups from 10 African countries. With ongoing alumni support in place, nearly 90% of these companies are still operational.
Through Injini’s African EdTech Ecosystem Development initiatives, over 300 ideation and early-stage EdTech innovators have been supported. To further support this growing community of passionate EdTech entrepreneurs and create a more enabling environment for them to ultimately create major social impact, the Injini Think Tank has been developed to house African education and innovation research, advisory and advocacy work.
Particular Areas of Interest:
Business Acceleration for African EdTech Startups
Injini has shifted from incubation to acceleration. This happened after four years of running Africa’s first specialised EdTech incubation programme. Injini offers this in response to the market need observed, thus the shift towards Injini’s EdTech Acceleration Partnership.
Going forward, Injini will work with relatively more established EdTech startups compared to the majority of ventures that had received incubation support in the past. Rather than participating in a set programme, Injini will now work with selected founders and business leaders to collaboratively define a number of company milestones to achieve over the course of the Acceleration Partnership, and then design a programme to help that company succeed. This personalised support package might include: financial support, coaching, mentorship, strategy support, bespoke market research support, access to network, upskilling opportunities, and capacity building.
When founders and business leaders are ready to graduate from the Acceleration Partnership, they will retain more passive benefits of the Injini partnership, including the opportunity to attend community events, receive subsidised market research, and tap into the expertise of the Injini network.
African EdTech Ecosystem Development Initiatives
Since 2017, Injini has run dozens of programmes and events all aiming to stimulate growth and development across sub-Saharan Africa’s EdTech ecosystem. One of Injini’s primary EdTech Ecosystem Development initiatives has historically taken the form of bootcamp or “sprint week” programmes designed to equip ideation-stage innovators and early-stage entrepreneurs with the fundamentals they’ll need to run an EdTech business in the sub-Saharan African context. Among other support, Injini and partners work with beneficiaries to help them gain a better understanding of the myths and evidence in education, design viable EdTech business models and pitch their EdTech solutions to stakeholders and prospective partners.
Injini also hosts and powers EdTech events throughout Africa that are designed to prompt local stakeholders to engage in meaningful conversations on the need for innovation in education delivery in their communities with the aim to identify potential solutions to fill the gaps.
So far, Injini has hosted or co-hosted events and programmes in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Tanzania, Zambia, Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria – with plans to reach EdTech innovators in even more African markets in the coming years.
If your organisation is interested in partnering with Injini to run an event, bootcamp or other initiative with the goal of further developing the EdTech ecosystem in Africa, contact Injini at firstname.lastname@example.org.
African EdTech Research, Consulting and Advocacy
The Injini Think Tank (ITT) is research, consulting & advocacy division of Injini. ITT commits itself to improving and promoting African educational research that matters.
To lead the African EdTech community through localised research, open innovation and influencing education policy.
We aim to steer and house localised industry research through data-led publications, bespoke market research for EdTech entrepreneurs, open discussion platforms and community building strategic initiatives.
For enquiries and/or prospective partnerships, contact email@example.com
Injini is led by a diverse team with a wealth of experience in social impact, education, entrepreneurship and research across Africa.
Krista leads the team at Injini, focusing on the organisation’s business development and strategic direction. She has spent her career in the social development sector with the last five years in the social entrepreneurship space. Krista has a particular passion for tech startups using their innovations to create positive change for the accessibility and quality of education, healthcare and financial services for vulnerable and under-resourced communities. She believes the ingenuity of African entrepreneurs addressing African challenges will propel the continent forward.
Kim heads up the Injini Think Tank, the research advisory and advocacy division of Injini. Kim has fifteen years’ career experience, particularly in the creative and social development sectors. She led a scaling up entrepreneurship programme creating access to markets at Business and Arts South Africa (BASA) and designed the strategy and research on an economic development project at Scaled Impact. Kim is passionate about African social and economic development and believes in the power of human-centred design and data-led decision making for the sustainability of humanity and enrichment of communities.
Tsepo heads up Injini’s Programme & Portfolio division, overseeing Injini’s Acceleration Partnership programme, EdTech ecosystem development initiatives, and alumni support for portfolio companies. Their experience spans across incubation implementation at the UCT GSB Solution Space, entrepreneurial support at Airbnb’s Africa Academy, and most recently leading the Social Entrepreneurship Impact Lab powered by FNB. Tsepo is passionate about social entrepreneurship and digital inclusion for sustainable and inclusive economic growth across Africa.
Injini's Board of Directors
Brendan Hughes is a legal professional and technology entrepreneur with an LLB from the University of Cape Town.
He has more than 15 years of experience in working with technology start-ups. Brendan currently serves as Chairperson of Injini EdTech Ventures, Africa’s leading EdTech incubator investing into EdTech start-ups across the African continent, and as a director of the BioCiTi biotechnology lab and incubator.
He is a co-founder of the LexVision Group, an international group of companies licensing and supporting legal industry technology solutions, including ShareBrief.com, MedBrief.co.uk and LexFutures.com.
Brendan also serves on the board of the Cape Innovation & Technology Initiative and on the Advisory Board of the University of Cape Town Faculty of Law.
Ian Merrington is CEO of The Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative and The Bandwidth Barn and is also a Director of Injini, Africa’s first EdTech Incubator. The Bandwidth Barn is Africa’s oldest technology incubator and is to-day regarded as one of the leading Technology business incubators in the world.
Ian is currently a member of the Economic War Room for Tech & BPO established by the WCGov, he also sat on the advisory boards of the University of Cape Town’s Information Systems department and also the Computer Sciences department. He was appointed an ambassador for AfricaCom 2018 (Africa’s largest Tech event) in recognition of his leadership role in driving Africa’s digital transformation.
Ian is passionate about the role of innovation in solving the challenges faced by modern societies. He believes that inclusive innovation can improve lives across the continent.
In his current role as CEO of CiTi, he has a focus on supporting and incubating inclusive tech enabled innovation, seeding technology clusters, creating job ready candidates for the Industry 4.0 and also accelerating tech entrepreneurs.
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