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Central Bank of Nigeria to Support 10 Startups to Help Grow eNaira Adoption

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in collaboration with The Africa Fintech Foundry (AFF), will be supporting 10 startups as part of the goal of increasing eNaira penetration.

The eNaira central bank digital currency (CBDC), which is designed to complement the Nigerian physical currency, was officially unveiled by the President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, in October 2021.

In June 2022, The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Africa Fintech Foundry (AFF) launched an application portal for the eNaira hackathon that was open to all Africans.

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SEE ALSO: [DEADLINE: JULY 21, 2022] The Central Bank of Nigeria Announces eNaira Hackathon for All Africans

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The hackathon, themed ‘eNaira – Africa’s Gateway to a Digital Economy,’ is aimed at bringing together teams of talented entrepreneurs, developers, designers, solution developers, problem-solvers, out-of-the-box thinkers, and ‘code magicians’ from Africa to develop innovative solutions that will drive improved adoption of the eNaira.

The competition has now entered the semi-final pitching stage with over 5,000 startups having registered for the eNaira Hackathon. This was reduced to about 175 teams and eventually 70 for the quarter-final pitching.

According to Daniel Awe, Head of AFF, the semi-final would see 20 teams being selected for the finals, of which the top 10 would be assisted to boost eNaira adoption in the country.

With people questioning the usefulness of the e-Naira, over the preference for cryptocurrencies, Daniel said:

“Tthe truth is that eNaira is going to be a successful product when there are use cases where people are able to see problems it is going to be solving.”

– Head, Africa Fintech Foundry (AFF)

The hackathon was thus meant for innovators, entrepreneurs and startups to introduce and develop ideas that integrate use the eNaira. According to David, this is necessary ‘so that the consumers of eNaira will now see the benefit of eNaira, they will have the opportunity to see the problem that eNaira will solve.’

The 10 winning startups will get support from the bank to implement and develop their ideas.

The winning startups will get:

  • Winner – N5 million ($11,900)
  • 1st Runners Up – N3 million ($7,150)
  • 2nd Runners Up – N2 million ($4,760)
  • The rest – N1 million ($2,380)

The top 10 will join the AFF Accelerator programme and ‘some of them will get funding,’ with this happening under the support of CBN and AFF.

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RECOMMENDED READING: Is Nigeria Seeking to Create an eNaira Ecosystem?

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