Over 200 edtech startups are spread across Africa using diverse models to bridge the quality education gap. This listicle captures a few of the edtech startups that will have covered previously.
Despite the innovation growth in edtech ecosystem. Africa still has some serious impediments to widespread technology adoption: internet coverage is low (at 27% in SSA), hardware and software costs are high (up to 30% of GDP per capita is spent on a smartphone).
Due to failing public school systems, households contribute up to 46% of total education spend on their children — this has resulted in 20–45% of K-12 population enrolled in private schools. Amidst this, African governments reportedly spend 5% of their GDPs on education, more than any other region in the world.
Edtech startups for primary, secondary schools and tertiary institutions:
Edukoya has a range of valuable features targeted at Nigerian secondary school learners including 24/7 exam preparation and homework tutor help, a data-driven question bank with step by step solutions and personalised performance tracking systems.
Currently, the platform is offering free, supplementary learning platforms, as well as subscription packages with premium features, focused on K-12 learning and exam preparation. The learning experience is delivered through a 100 per cent online model which promotes self-learning and allows learners to save time, save money and get smarter.
Gradely is another edtech startup founded in 2019. Similar to uLesson in that it targets secondary school learners, but its uniqueness is in the use of data analytics and algorithms to provide adaptive learning.
With gradely.ng adaptive learning, teachers and parents can ensure their ward does not have a learning gap in any subject. So far, Gradely has been deployed in 60 schools, raised about $35,000 (₦12.7 million) in seed funding, and was also part of the Facebook Accelerator 2019 Cohort.
Teesas offers video classes and other digital educational material for learners in Nigeria. Learners access the content via live and recorded formats, through a subscription program from N3,000 monthly to N8,100 quarterly and N27,000 yearly. It is also available as a bundled offer on the Imose Omotab 2 educational tablets.
In addition to other subjects, Teesas also offers classes in Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo, Ibibio, Bini, Ijaw, Tiv and many other local languages and gamified teaching methods with animations and musicals. Last year, the edtech startup raised $1.6 million to improve its product offering.
Founded by Kenyan serial entrepreneur Sam Gichuru in 2020, Kidato is an online school for K-12 students in Africa. Kidato classes have student-teacher ratios of 5:1 and teach the same rigorous international curriculum as other private schools but at a fraction of the price.
The Kenyan startup took part in the Y Combinator Winter 2021 batch and banked $125,000 in funding. Later in April, Kidato raised $1.4 million in a seed funding round.
M-Shule is an SMS knowledge-building platform that helps organisations deliver learning, evaluation, activation, and data tools across East Africa. Meaning “mobile school” in Swahili, M-Shule combines SMS with artificial intelligence to reach offline or low-income communities with self-paced, interactive, and personalised resources to power their success.
Other African edtech startups offering similar services to the aforementioned includes PrepClass, Tuteria, Splatt.ng, Enko Education, Kukua, Edcent.
Edtech platforms for tech skills and the workplace:
Launched in 2018, Utiva is a “technology workforce development startup that helps people learn premium technology skills virtually and partners with companies to hire the best talents and invest in workforce development.”
AltSchool Africa is an initiative of TalentQL, it is a school for individuals looking to gain technical skills and kickstart a career in software engineering and product development and management.
It is affiliated with higher institutions across the continent to ensure the credibility of the Diploma certificate that will be issued to students at the end of the program. One of such institutions is Michael and Cecilia Ibru University (MCIU)—a private university in Southern Nigeria.
Stutern is a skills development and job placement platform that trains and connects young African talents with long-term employment. The platform focuses on the following skills: UI/UX design, front-end development, backend development, data science and mobile development.
Some graduates from Stutern now work at Paystack, Canva, Interswitch, and other reputable tech firms across the world.
Slatecube is a technology company that develops AI-powered SaaS (Software-as-a-service) solutions for learning and workforce development.
Governments, social impact organizations, businesses, and individuals use Slatecube digital platforms to run their learning and workforce management programs.
Arifu is a Kenyan edtech startup that has digitized the agribusiness’ traditional in-person training and product information dissemination which reduced its cost of delivery from $20 to $1 per farmer. According to Arifu, it has engaged 250,000 farmers over interactive SMS to help improve their good agricultural practices.
Mosabi provides access to mobile financial and business learning materials for underserved citizens working as grassroots entrepreneurs or with MSMEs in emerging markets – across segments ranging from youth, informal businesses, family business owners, gig economy workers, and smallholder farmers.
Semicolon is a Nigerian edtech that is addressing youth unemployment by training software engineers and techpreneurs to enable profitable and inclusive economic growth.
Every year, Semicolon takes in tens of young and driven youths; who are usually complete newbies and with diverse backgrounds, to begin a one-year software engineering journey.
Editor's note: This is not a full list of edtech startups in Africa