Accenture SA opens entries for Open Innovation Africa programme

02 October 2018 3 min. read
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Based on its principles of Open Innovation, Accenture is looking to facilitate business growth for Africa’s Top 30 startups and has called for applications from across the continent to be placed on the prestigious list. Selected firms will get a chance to display their products at Accenture SA’s Liquid Studio for a year, among other rewards. 

As South Africa navigates a prolonged period of slow economic growth and all of Africa contends with regulatory restrictions and digital disruption, Accenture has remained true to one principle as the solution to all problems – innovation. The firm’s senior leadership has repeatedly emphasised the need to collaborate and innovate to truly unleash market potential.

The firm has now put this principle into practice through the launch of the Africa to 30 start-ups programme, organised in collaboration with Forbes magazine. The initiative is aimed at new entrepreneurial ventures that operate in domains that are problematic in a number of African countries, such as business, government and civil society.

Within the innovative space, the firm has expressed a preference for firms working in industry 4.0 domains such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, cybersecurity, big data, development technology, automation, and extended reality. Despite being slow to gain momentum initially, these technologies have rapidly grown in popularity recently.

Accenture SA opens entries for Open Innovation Africa programme

Applications for the programme are open until the 7th of October, following which candidates will be subject to two rounds of evaluation. The first round will consist of surveys and quantitative evaluations to narrow down the pool, while the second round will involve in-depth analysis of business models to select the top 30.

The top 30 will receive widespread publicity in the media, alongside a number of other perks. They will participate in Accenture Africa’s Corporate Market Access Week in Johannesburg, which is expected to take place in February next year. The event offers extensive opportunity for networking and collaboration with some of the leading innovative businesses from across the world.

The best firms will also have the opportunity to display their innovative solutions at Accenture’s Liquid studio in Johannesburg, which was launched last year to promote innovation in the country. The firms will also be included in Accenture’s global Open Innovation Network. 

Accenture South Africa’s Open Innovation Lead said of the initiative, “Open innovation allows a path for collaboration between established businesses and innovative start-ups with great products, but no direct route to market. African start-ups often struggle to find an opportunity to plug their great technologies into established client value chains. Yet, with the right support, this all becomes possible, opening the doors to amazing opportunities for value creation, benefiting Africa and its people.”