August 17, 2023

EMURGO Africa’s First Tokyo Event Report

EMURGO Africa’s First Tokyo Event Report

EMURGO Africa Event in Tokyo: Delving into the state of Web 3.0 in Africa

EMURGO Africa is delighted to present a summary of the insightful discussions and presentations that took place at our recent event focused on the burgeoning technology landscape in Africa. Held at the prestigious Shin Marunouchi Building in Tokyo, Japan, on August 2nd, the event provided a platform for prominent leaders and experts to share their experiences, insights, and perspectives on the exciting developments in the region.

Event Overview:

The event revolved around the exploration of opportunities and challenges within the African tech ecosystem, with a special emphasis on the influence of Web3.0 technologies. The discussions encompassed a range of topics, from the evolving characteristics of the African market to the transformative potential of blockchain technology in the region.

Key Highlights:

1. The Current Situation in Africa by Yosuke Yoshida Co-CEO of EMURGO Middle East and Africa:

  • The presentation shed light on the characteristics of Africa, including its young population and rapidly increasing access to the internet.
  • In collaboration with PwC, a report was created and an event was conducted in Kenya in June of this year. The event brought together representatives from the Kenyan government, major corporations, universities, and other institutions.
  • The International Finance Corporation (IFC) projects a need for digital skills in 230 million jobs across Sub-Saharan Africa by 2030, representing a $130 billion opportunity to equip the future workforce. Despite this potential, a significant challenge remains: 2.7 billion people globally – one-third of the world's population – lack internet access. The majority of this disconnected population resides in Africa, where only 40% have internet access. This figure stands in stark contrast to other regions, with 64% in Asia and the Pacific, 80% in the Americas, and 89% in Europe.
  • Venture capital activities in Africa have grown significantly, with Web3 accounting for a small but growing portion of investment.

2. EMURGO Africa Activities by Shogo Ishida Co-CEO of EMURGO Middle East and Africa:

  • Co-CEO of EMURGO Middle East and Africa shared personal experiences and the company's mission in Africa and the Middle East.
  • Cardano's Founding Organizations consist of three main entities, involving over 1,000 professionals, with the collective mission to transform the financial system in emerging markets, particularly in Africa, and provide access to 1 billion people with economic identity:
  • The mission is underscored by critical issues in Africa's financial system:
  • Sub-Saharan inflation rates are 2% higher than the global average.
  • Over 1 billion people lack bank accounts, with over 40% of the African population not having access to banks, leading to 90% of transactions conducted with cash.
  • 140 million African descendants living in the diaspora send international remittances, facing remittance fees of about 10% for simple international transfers.
  • A major issue is the exorbitant interest rates faced by borrowers, who must pay 75-100% interest per annum due to a lack of ID to verify their identity.
  • As a VC, EMURGO Africa has been investing in African startups, and has executed 50 investments in the past year and a half.
  • EMURGO Africa achievements in investing in startups and fostering growth were highlighted, emphasizing the focus on fintech and blockchain projects.
  • Ishida has highlighted three of their investments, BuuPass, an African online ticketing and booking platform, Melanin Kapital, a Kenyan fintech platform that focuses on connecting African SMEs with green financing, and Seso Global, an online real estate marketplace utilizing blockchain technology to reshape the African real estate industry.
  • Through activities as a VC, EMURGO Africa realized that information about African products is not reaching VCs outside of Africa. Because of this, they launched NODO this year.

3. Panel Discussion: The State of New Tech Business in Africa:

  • Distinguished guest speakers shared their perspectives on Web3 startups in emerging countries.
  • Insights from Hiroki Ishida, representatives of AAIC Kenya, Kota Nakano, deputy manager of Mitsubishi Corporation and Aoi Narita from Kepple Africa Ventures.
  • Focus on Web3's impact on improving lives and fostering economic inclusion in Africa.

4. Expert Views on Web3 Startups:

  • The panel discussed Japan's role in the global Web3 landscape and the potential for localization of foreign products.
  • Insights from Jonathan Tanemori, deputy general manager of SBI Investment, Sebastien Guillemot, Co-founder of DCSpark, and Akinori Adachi, CEO of STANDAGE.
  • Observations on gamification, barriers to NFT minting, and the role of fees in emerging countries.
  • Insights into stablecoin trading, settlement, and its impact on financial accessibility.

5. Closing Remarks by Mr. Fujisue: Former member of the House of Councillors and Visiting Professor at the University of Tokyo's, Keio University International Business Creation Center, Mr. Fujisue, shared his insights on the event and the future.

The event brought together thought leaders, industry experts, and innovators from Japan and beyond to engage in dynamic discussions about the evolving tech landscape in Africa. From highlighting the potential of stablecoins and blockchain for economic empowerment to showcasing success stories in fintech and blockchain projects, the event provided a comprehensive overview of the opportunities and challenges within the region.

We extend our gratitude to all the attendees, speakers, and partners who contributed to the success of this event. The insights shared during this gathering not only enrich our understanding of the African tech ecosystem but also inspire us to collaborate and innovate for a more inclusive and prosperous future.

About EMURGO Middle East & Africa

EMURGO Africa invests and partners with Africa-focused enterprises, startups, and accelerators to foster the development of socially impactful solutions on Cardano’s third-generation and environmentally-sustainable blockchain.

Related Articles

EMURGO Africa Unveils ’EMURGO Labs’
EMURGO Africa Unveils ’EMURGO Labs’

March 4, 2024


EMURGO Africa Unveils ’EMURGO Labs’

A New Development Hub Fueling Web3 Across Africa, Middle East and GCC Dubai, 4 March 2024 - EMURGO Africa, the investment and commercial arm of Cardano in Africa, today announced the launch of EMURGO Labs, a dedicated development entity for emerging Web3 technologies.

EMURGO Africa and Adaverse Unveil the Cardano Blockchain Founders Hangout 2.0 Event to Discuss Funding Web3 in Africa
EMURGO Africa and Adaverse Unveil the Cardano Blockchain Founders Hangout 2.0 Event to Discuss Funding Web3 in Africa

August 12, 2022

Event, News

EMURGO Africa and Adaverse Unveil the Cardano Blockchain Founders Hangout 2.0 Event to Discuss Funding Web3 in Africa

Mark your calendars: This August 15th, Shogo Ishida, Yosuke Yoshida, Chuta Chimezie and William Phelps will discuss how African Web3 startups can raise funding and Web3 project ideation at the upcoming Cardano Blockchain Founders Hangout 2.0 (BFH2) in Lagos, Nigeria. Cardano accelerator Adaverse, in collaboration with EMURGO Africa, will host the second edition of the Blockchain Founders Hangout in Lagos, Nigeria on August 15th, 2022 to demystify venture funding in Africa and encourage more pro

Power Learn Project (PLP) and EMURGO Africa Forge Strategic Partnership with Institute of Accountancy Arusha (IAA) to Empower the Tech Ecosystem in Tanzania
Power Learn Project (PLP) and EMURGO Africa Forge Strategic Partnership with Institute of Accountancy Arusha (IAA) to Empower the Tech Ecosystem in Tanzania

November 29, 2023


Power Learn Project (PLP) and EMURGO Africa Forge Strategic Partnership with Institute of Accountancy Arusha (IAA) to Empower the Tech Ecosystem in Tanzania

Arusha, Tanzania - November 2023  In a groundbreaking initiative set to propel technological advancement in Tanzania, Power Learn Project (PLP) and EMURGO Africa are gearing up for a series of transformative activities with the Institute of Accountancy Arusha (IAA) University. This multifaceted endeavor aims to redefine the Tanzanian software development landscape by seamlessly integrating education, blockchain innovation, and a commitment to academic excellence.  Recent seminars held at Arush