There are many use cases for blockchain technology beyond the cryptocurrency and NFT projects we see in the news today. In many African nations, blockchain has the potential to enhance the quality of life for millions of people who currently do not have access to internet services in the ways that those in developed nations do.
Africa’s blockchain space is booming, and new blockchain startups promise to bring solutions to the African economy that can help create global financial equity unlike ever before. The continent is quickly earning its title as the ‘Crypto Continent’ for its welcoming attitude toward new blockchain startups and the mass adoption of cryptocurrency. In some nations like the Central African Republic, government officials have begun to accept Bitcoin as legal tender amid cash flow issues with fiat currency.
Many blockchain startups operating throughout Africa aim to solve real-world issues that impact millions of people. Beyond trading platforms and exchanges, Africa’s blockchain startups represent some of the most innovative use cases for blockchain on the planet. Here are some of the many blockchain startups working in Africa today:
Mara is a pan-African crypto exchange that aims to invite young people to experience DeFi through an easy-to-use platform. The company, which raised $23 million from Coinbase Ventures and FTX this year, is working to help millions of Africans build digital wealth through cryptocurrency. The MARA team brings with it specialized skills to help deploy cryptocurrency onboarding and education to local communities throughout the continent.
3air, a blockchain-based internet startup focusing on increasing connectivity in Africa, is working to solve the connectivity and banking crisis throughout the continent. With millions of unconnected and unbanked individuals, the company sees how approaching the issues as one and the same can increase economic growth throughout Africa’s most underdeveloped nations.
The use cases for blockchain in the food industry are becoming more discussed in recent months. BeefLedger, a South African startup focused on increasing transparency in the food supply chain, works to create transparency in the beef supply through blockchain technology. The company is working to tackle issues of food safety and fraud concerns in the food supply chain throughout South Africa, and can help consumers validate where their meat comes from.
Similar to the need for more transparency in the food industry, it’s no secret that the gemstone world is fraught with the controversy surrounding its supply chains. De Beers Group, a company that specializes in diamond mining throughout Africa, launched Tracr, the world’s first decentralized blockchain ledger that will work to increase transparency in the global diamond trade. Using Tracr, consumers can see each diamond’s entire supply chain process that hits the retail market. Companies can use that information to demand better working conditions in the diamond trade.
H20 Securities is working to solve water scarcity issues through blockchain. The company uses DeFi to fund water infrastructure in nations that need it most, specifically throughout Africa. H20 Securities hopes to use blockchain technology to track the production of 3 billion liters of water in the next decade.
Valr South Africa
Valr is a bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange platform operating out of South Africa. The company emphasizes the idea of a borderless currency, and hopes to connect millions of individuals to the global economy through its trading platform.
OneWatt Solar Nigeria
OneWatt Solar Nigeria is working on tokenizing solar energy to address energy poverty throughout Africa. The company will install solar energy grids for individuals and enable them to operate their own decentralized services to individuals in their area. The company uses blockchain technology to tokenize the platform, and its goal is to provide 14GW of sustainable energy to the African continent by 2030.