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SHEBA VALLEY to SILICON VALLEY: Bridging The Eco-System Gap- IBEX Frontier's Initiative

February 7, 2018

 

IBEX Frontier's Founder & MD Zekarias Amsalu was the guest speaker at the 2nd meeting of Ethiopian Professionals and Ethiophiles in the Silicon Valley in Oakland, California. The event provided a platform to showcase the tales of Sheba Valley, the emerging Ethiopian tech eco-system. Zekarias briefed bay-area based techies with updates of Sheba Valley's success stories and upcoming trends supported by slides, pictures and videos specially recorded for the event. 

 

Some of the 'Start-ups' and 'High-rises' of Sheba Valley highlighted at the meeting were:

 

Icog-Labs - The Artificial Intelligence (AI) research lab based in Ethiopia, Icog-labs is behind the brain system of the humanoid robot Sophia that recently was granted a Saudi citizenship. Founded by Getnet Aseffa and having 25 full-time software engineers (and 45 interns on average), Icog-labs is not only proud to have been behind Humanoid Sophia's brain, but also working on concepts including driver-less cars, drones, Robo-soccer players, bioinformatics research and many more. Some pictures taken during IBEX's visit to Icog-lab were shown to the audience. 

 GEBEYA - An Edtech headquartered in Addis Abeba and producing the best of African talent having a slogan of 'Empowering Africa Through Technology'. The talents Gebeya has produced as well as the first 3D mobile Game resulted from Gebeya's incubation was certainly beyond the wildest imagination of the audience. Gebeya has graduated 211 talents in its 1 year training operation and these razor-sharp talents are deployed on Gebeya's Marketplace platform and working on various international projects. Gebeya's Business Development team will be reaching out to several Silicon Valley based startups and software development companies to outsource software development work through its Marketplace platform to Africa.

 

These sample vidoes were shown as a sampler to the talent outcome of Gebeya's signature training:- 

 

 

 

KUKULU Game - A 3D Mobile Game that is made by a Startup, Qene Technologies, incubated by Gebeya was also shown to the audience that left the audience eager to download the game and chase that run away chicken on their smart phones!

 

 

ZAYRIDE - Dubbed the 'Uber of Africa', Zayride is the ride hailing startup moving the political capital of Africa - Addis Ababa. 

 

Furthermore, a specially recorded Video from Yenepay - Ethiopia's first E-commerce solution providers was shown to the audience, as well as update on other Sheba Valley success stories including the remit-to-pay solution MELA by Ethiopia's Fintech provider Kifiya.

 

Action Points

 

Zekarias quoted a line from his article of July 2017 with which he coined the term 'Sheba Valley' for Ethiopia's emerging tech eco-system that reads "...while Ethiopia has the talent pool there is a gap in the form of resources, direction, mentor-ship, and personal/business skills...." and pleaded the Silicon Valley based tech experts to collaborate with Sheba Valley innovators for an eco-system build-up. Encouraged by the overwhelming desire of the audience to support Sheba Valley, Ibex Frontier is pleased to be the bridge between Silicon Valley and Sheba Valley and will be matching Silicon Valley based tech experts with the most applicable startups in Sheba Valley for mentor-ship, board of Advisory roles, product testing and eco-system advisory. It is IBEX's strongest desire that the eco-system of Silicon Valley will be greater use to Ethiopia's sheba valley and the subject matter experts collaboration and contribution contribute to Sheba Valley's growing success. 

 

If you are based in Silicon Valley and want to get involved in Sheba Valley's success story, please complete this survey form and IBEX will be pleased to connect you with Sheba Valley innovators. 

 

Feedback from the Organizers:

 

"Zekarias has an unparalleled knowledge of the rising tech sector in Ethiopia and Africa at large. Our community of Ethiopians and Ethiophiles in the Silicon Valley was impressed by how Sheba Valley is evolving as the African Silicon Valley. His presentation was an eye opener, it revealed unique investment opportunities and uncovered untapped potential. Thank you Zekarias for all that you do for young bright minds in Ethiopia, connecting Sheba Valley to the world and plugging foreign investors to start-ups with visionary entrepreneurs.“

 

Bernard Laurendeau - Slalom, Delivery Leadership.

 

Some pictures from the event:

 

 Interested to learn more about Investment opportunities in Sheba Valley? Please visit our website www.ibexfrontier.com and reach out to us, happy to help!

 

 

 

 

 

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