Many have ventured in bringing hubs together and some have succeeded. However, not many have been able to create concrete collaboration between the hubs. SAIS does that with Connected Hubs.

Connected Hubs share best practices in innovation support through online and offline training sessions together with international experts. In 2018, they produced the Annual Southern Africa Innovation Forum (ASAIF) a regional platform which is a flagship of the Southern Africa Innovation Support Programme (SAIS 2). SAIS 2 facilitates improved networks through Connected Hubs by connecting actors for a joint cause, providing training skills for a lasting impact in their local innovation ecosystems as well as building trust between the actors across regions.

Connected Hubs activities are set to grow based on learnings from 2018 and scale to include more hubs from the SADC region and beyond. By the end of the year 2019, Connected Hubs will have built bridges between 20 business support organisations across seven countries, supported over 300 early-stage entrepreneurs and strengthened ten early-stage, impact-driven start-ups. Overall hubs have strengthened their skills in start-up coaching and regional collaboration.

WHO WE ARE

Connected Hubs is a network of Southern African innovation support organisations with linkages to international innovation ecosystems.

WHAT WE DO

With a shared goal to enable and facilitate the development of early stage entrepreneurs, we have embarked upon a journey to collaborate to share best practises.

WE ARE REGIONAL

The actors are from Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia, the broader SADC region and beyond. 

CONNECTED HUBS

ACTIONS & OUTCOMES

BUILDING

CONNECTIVITY

SUPPORTING

CONNECTED HUBS

PARTNERING TO STRENGTHEN STARTUPS

All Connected Hubs partners join forces with SAIS and Slush GIA to support the entrepreneurs, the new superheroes of Africa, and offer a regional platform for expansion through international connections. SAIS has partnered with Slush Global Impact Accelerator to continue supporting startups from emerging markets to participate in the annual internationally recognised tech startup event, Slush, organised in Helsinki, Finland. This partnership offers impactful coaching of early-stage startups focusing on solutions to local economic and social challenges. 

CONNECTED HUBS

STARTUPS

In 2018, SAIS partners with Slush Global Impact Accelerator to select one promising start-up per SAIS partner country. These five start-ups are all young enterprises solving a societal problem in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The start-ups join Slush GIA to gain insight in topics ranging from pitching to investor relationships as well as business and product development.

Soma App - Tanzania (supported by Connected Hubs)
AgriPredict - Zambia (supported by Connected Hubs)
Zeal and Zest - Botswana (supported by Slush GIA)
Solve Namibia - Namibia (supported by Slush GIA)
Cancer Dojo - South Africa (supported by Slush GIA)

CONNECTED HUBS

STARTUPS 2017

In 2017, SAIS 2 piloted cross-border collaboration with Botswana Innovation Hub and Fablab Namibia. The three organisations supported two startups from Namibia and three from Botswana to attend Slush 2017 in Helsinki with hub managers.  The five start-ups took part in a 2-month incubator programme with coaching sessions, on pitching, business mentoring and product development.

Phillip Sellwe, Bayon Holdings - Botswana

Kaveto Tjatjara, Worldview Technologies - Namibia

Vincent Van Wyk, PEBL - Namibia

Kennedy Letsogile, EcoHub - Botswana

Tumelo Mapila, Focus Surveys - Botswana

CONNECTED HUBS

RESOURCES FOR STARTUPS

Pitching skills are crucial to any start up and early stage entrepreneur. SAIS has partnered with Funzi, a Finnish based mobile service training and learning company, to collect most useful tips on pitching. These videos give step by step guidance on how to prepare  a compelling 3-minute pitch and also highlighting the most common mistakes in pitching. Need to brush up your lingo regarding the startup world? Check out this helpful brochure!


How to Pitch your Startup in 3 Minutes
3 Mistakes to avoid when pitching your startup

CONNECTED HUBS

RESOURCES FOR INNOVATION ACTORS

Innovation events are important components of every innovation ecosystems adding value to role-players efforts of to network, to gain exposure and to create diverse platforms facilitating learning and timely sharing of knowledge.

The resources toolkit prepared by Connected Hubs will offer guidance on how to plan and market events while working through networks and partnerships.

An overview and definition of Ínclusive Innovation

Professor Mikko Koria, Associate Dean of Enterprise, Professor of Design Innovations, Director of  the Institute of Design Innovation, Loughborough University, London

Listen here 

An in depth introduction to  Slush, one of the Europe’s largest start up and  tech events organised annually in Helsinki, Finland which sees over 40,000 attendants.

Aino Piirtola , Head of Global Impact Accelerator (GIA)

View here 

Insight on the components of designing a tech conference as a  unique experience. Anssi Laurila, Creative Producer, Slush

Listen here  

Practical guide on the key elements of event management for large scale conferences Margaretha van Schalkwyk, Operations Director, SA Innovation Summit

Download here

An introduction to  the branding philosophy of Slush with practical guidelines on how it can be done.

Jesse Pyy, Chief Marketing Officer, Slush

Listen here

Download here 

Basics of  marketing for a local innovation event, and provides tips on partnerships.

Dr. Audrey Verhaeghe, President, SA Innovation Summit

MEMBERS

CONNECTED HUBS