USAID and 500Startups Organize “Geeks on a Plane – Africa Tour”


Geeks on a Plane (#GOAP) is an invite-only tour for startups, investors, and executives to learn about high-growth technology markets worldwide. We travel by planes, trains, and automobiles to the most exciting international startup scenes with the sole mission of uniting geeks and exploring cross-border opportunities. The result: a lifelong bond with fellow travelers, a wealth of new friends and business contacts in exploding technology markets, and a stronger appreciation for the cultural and economic ties that bind us globally.


Lagos, Nigeria –
Rightfully referred to as “Yabacon Valley,” Lagos has recently emerged as Nigeria’s tech hub. Home to successful startups like Paga (the #1 money transfer and payments service in Nigeria) and Andela (which just banked $24 million in a round led by Mark Zuckerberg and Google Ventures and aims to provide companies with access to top tech talent), Lagos has proven itself to be a key player in tech.

Accra, Ghana –
Just an hour flight away from Lagos, Accra is also making waves in tech. With plans underway to pour $40 million into building a state-of-the-art business innovation hub called the “Ghana Cyber City,” plus numerous hackathons hosted by incubators like MEST and ServLed, Ghana’s tech industry is proving to be a formidable force.

Johannesburg, South Africa –
Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa, began as a 19th-century mining settlement. Today, residents are digging up a different type of gem — their city’s tech gold. In fact, technology giant IBM invested $61 million to expand its newest IBM Research Lab to Braamfontein. This tech hub sets sights on advancing Big Data and mobile technologies, especially in healthcare, science, and the IoT.

Cape Town, South Africa –
Living up to nicknames like the “Digital Gateway to Africa” and “Silicon Cape,” Cape Town is cementing itself as a leading continental hub for tech startups. With more innovation programs in the province than anywhere else in South Africa, including CodeX, AlphaCode, RLabs, Grindstone Accelerator, the Bandwidth Barn, and the Silicon Cape Initiative, it’s no wonder the Western Cape has the most startups and VC activity in South Africa.


March 20 – April 2, 2017

Learn more here: Geek on a plane














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