Backed by the World Bank, MEST Heads to Slush! in Helsinki

Kelechi Udoagwu | Tuesday, September 1st, 2015

Backed by the World Bank, MEST Heads to Slush! in HelsinkiLast Friday,
Slush held a regional pitch competition for startups in Ghana. Supported by the World Bank, Slush is a non-profit event organized by a global community of entrepreneurs, investors, and students. It is a focal point for startups and technology talent to meet with top-tier international investors, executives and media.The event, held at the Meltwater Incubator, was fast-paced and vibrant. The contesting applications included already existing, and idea-phase startups. They pitched and sold their product vision to the audience for three minutes each, and then faced the judges in the Q & A section.
The panelists, an experienced team of business-focused individuals, included Todd Holcombe, the Senior faculty at MEST, Phillippe Greinacher, the Head of Digital Publishing at Ringier, Fredrik Andersson, business fellow at MEST, and Tolu Agunbiade, business fellow at MEST.Seven teams contested, all from the MEST portfolio: Asoriba – a web and mobile application that enables effective church administration for leaders, and seamless engagement with members. Retail Tower – a web application that enables online retailers to promote their stores by listing their products on over 30 shopping engines such as Google, eBay, Amazon, Shopbot, Myshopping.com.au and Shopping.com. Suba – a web and mobile event-based photo-sharing application. Pharmsee – a web application which acts as a drug search engine which allows users to search for drugs and returns the nearest pharmacies which have them in stock. Flippy Campus – a mobile application that shows information on everything related to students’ campus experiences. Leti Arts – an interactive media studio which develops cross-platform media products – digital comics and mobile games – based on African history and folklore. Beam Pay – a web application that helps Ghanaians in diaspora care for their loved ones in Ghana by sending money, paying fees and running errands affordably and quickly.

Flippy Campus, Leti Arts and Asoriba emerged as semi-final winners. And while the final results of one winner is still yet to be announced, these three teams are very much excited and grateful for the opportunity to get a chance to represent MEST and Ghana at the final competition at Helsinki this November.The selected winning team will go to Helsinki in November and receive the following:

  1. Helsinki boot camp program from 4th to 13th of November, 2015: air tickets and accommodation covered for the duration of the program
  2. Conference pass to Slush
  3. Opportunity to be featured in Slush within Slush Impact
  4. Opportunity to attend and to be featured in UNICEF Innovation Summit
  5. Networking and meeting opportunities with impact investors, NGOs, institutions, startups, media and other stakeholders
  6. Skills workshops and capacity building
  7. Industry specific matchmaking sessions

Senior Faculty of MEST, Todd Holcombe, congratulated the teams, admitting that it was a really tough job to pick 3 from the 7 who competed, “They were all outstanding pitches, products and teams,” he said.
Jorn Lyseggen, founder of MEST will be delivering a speech at the SLUSH event this November. He joins other tech luminaries on stage, such as:

  1. Niklas Zennström, Co-founder & CEO of Skype
  2. Jacqueline Novogratz, Founder and CEO of Acumen
  3. Phil Libin, Co-founder & Executive Chairman of Evernote
  4. Caterina Fake, Co-founder of Flickr & Hunch, Chairman of Etsy.com
  5. Bracken Darrell, CEO of Logitech
  6. Neil Rimer, Founder & Partner at Index Ventures
  7. Morten Primdahl, Co-founder & CTO of Zendesk

The three winners await the results which will be released later this week. Good luck to Flippy Campus, Leti Arts and Asoriba!