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It has been a pleasure working with Visa to find great entries from start-ups to solve the payment and commerce challenges of tomorrow. 

VEI is a global open innovation program that tasks start-ups with discovering the next big thing in payments and commerce. Since 2015, the Visa Everywhere Initiative has reached more than 100 countries and recruited over 7,000 start-ups.

The Ethiopia competition launched on February 18th, 2021, and closed on April 9th, 2021 with 59 entries. A winner will be announced on May 10th, 2021 and will automatically be entered as one of the top 5 finalists for the CEMEA region to compete in the regional event that will be livestreamed on TechCrunch, Visa’s global media partner for the initiative.

Akofada (DFS Ethiopia)

The finalists are:


ArifPay is a mobile point of sale system which will allow ATM cardholders to make electronic transactions via their smartphones. ArifPay ( ArifPay Financial Technologies Share Company ) recently raised $3.5M / 140M ETB from 31 investors in a private placement round.   


Chapa is an upcoming fintech startup that plans to engage in the payment gateway API, mobile payment, and bill aggregation services sector. Chapa is expected to enter the market by launching an online payment gateway API that allows merchants to accept debit card payments online from users or customers in Ethiopia and beyond.


Ebirr is the latest entrant to the mobile money space in Ethiopia that provides mobile payment and transfers solution. E-birr claims to have 2 million users, 15,000 + and 5000 + Agents and resellers.

Orbit Health

Orbit Health is a digital health startup that has been at the forefront of efforts to digitize, modernize, and optimize healthcare delivery in Ethiopia. Some of Orbit Health’s products include an Electrical Medical records platform, a patient engagement platform, and a healthcare solution called O-wallet. Orbit Health previously raised a seed round


Smile Pay is a super app that helps users access various services and enables them to pay online.

The winner of VEI from the top 5 finalists will be awarded $5000.

Join us on 10th of May at 3.00pm EAT as we announce the winner of Visa Everywhere Initiative competition in Ethiopia. A link to watch the live streaming event will be provided closer to date.  Ensure you mark your calendars for the May 10th virtual event and we will share a link through Shega Weekly Newsletter and our social Media Channels.

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