LAfricaMobile amplifies the voice of African business

16 March 2023
Web3

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Since October 2022, Lyon’s first Web3 incubator – the result of a partnership between iExec and H7 – has been offering a choice support program to 3 start-ups to boost their projects. Meet start-ups from the Web3 incubator 🪐

LAfricaMobile is one of the three winners of Lyon’s first Web3 incubator, set up by iExec and H7. We spoke to Malick Diouf, CEO of LAfricaMobile, to find out more about the project 🔎

Hello Malick! What motivated you to create LAfricaMobile?

The creation of LAfricaMobile stems from an observation that touches me deeply: economically speaking, Africa is the least developed continent in the world.

In my opinion, the main problem is that there are too few strong companies on the continent. If the companies present grow, they will have a real positive effect on the continent and its inhabitants: more jobs, better living conditions for employees, improved infrastructure and, of course, clear economic growth. This awareness has become my driving force, the one that pushes me to work every day to change this situation. In 2015, I decided to make my contribution to this change with the creation of LAfricaMobile.

Thanks to my training (INSA Toulouse) and my experience as a telecommunications engineer, I saw the opportunity tohelp companies communicate their products and services more effectively to their customers .

All this is made possible by an extremely widespread means of communication in Africa: cell phones. By 2025, 1 billion people in Africa will have a cell phone, 90% of them prepaid.

Through a multi-channel platform, companies can send marketing campaigns to the cell phones of all their customers and prospects, via SMS, voicemail or Whatsapp.

The adventure began in Senegal, where I’m originally from. Very quickly, the media, NGOs, the Senegalese government and telephone operators showed an interest in the solution. Thanks to this enthusiasm, I’ve been able to duplicate the value proposition and business model in other African countries.

Today, LAfricaMobiles has over 200 corporate customers and 30 trusted telephone operators. We are present in around ten countries, including Mali, Niger, Côte d’Ivoire and other West African countries. The conquest of Central Africa is underway, and we’ve just opened our offices in Kinshasa in the DRC.

To ensure the company’s development, we have raised funds on three occasions: first as love money, then as seed money, for a total of 1 million euros.

What use cases are you developing as part of the Web3 incubator?

To explain it simply, it’s a platform for sharing data between users and companies, entirely secure thanks to the Blockchain. This platform enables the user to earn phone credit, and the company to have access to databases of qualified users with their consent for their marketing campaigns.

Users share information via a form or SMS, and this information is then used by companies to send more targeted communications. Users can choose the frequency and content of messages they wish to receive. In exchange, they receive free phone credit.

Data security and governance are important for users who share their information. iExec’s technology guarantees the confidentiality of these users’ information. Companies can use this information for one-off marketing campaigns, but without access to the exact information (telephone number, surname, first name, etc.).

Who leads the blockchain project team?

From left to right: Malick DIOUF (CEO and Founder) and Talla DJITE (Operations Manager).

Today, there are several of us working on this project, which I coordinate with a great deal of passion, thanks to my ten years’ experience in the telecoms industries in Europe and Africa.

Next to me is Talla Djite, our Operations Manager. Talla has 20 years’ experience as an IT engineer, notably at Crédit Agricole Assurance.

What has the incubator done for you so far?

The incubator gave us the right tools to further expand our value proposition. The use case developed with iExec meets a tangible need for our customers.

Our technical team, based in Dakar, is trained in blockchain through the incubator’s content. The iExec teams support them in learning Blockchain technology and on the stack. iExec provides us with invaluable regular, personalized technical support, which plays a key role in developing our technical expertise.

We look forward to continuing to explore the possibilities of blockchain technology and staying at the forefront of the industry to offer this unique value proposition to our customers.

What can we wish you? What’s next for LAfricaMobile?

With a team of over 30 people in 10 different countries, we’re already transforming the African mobile marketing landscape. And that’s just the beginning! By 2025, we’ll have around a hundred employees, present throughout the African continent.

Our direction is clear: to continue the ambitious execution of LAfricaMobile in Africa, with investors who push us to surpass ourselves every day.

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Kelly Green

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