Five African Innovations For Covid-19 Thus Far

Feature Article Five African Innovations For Covid-19 Thus Far
MAY 3, 2020 LISTEN

Every day, week, and month there is a startup or business venture coming out of Africa. Within the many enterprises, there are some worth highlighting and shedding light on during COVID-19.

The following are five of them that were written and spoken about highly from start of corona-virus epidemic till current pandemic.

Enjoy African progressive development, progressive innovations, and progressive solutions at their finest!


MDaaS is a tech startup that provides convenient, high-quality, and affordable healthcare. They currently operate in Nigeria. MDaaS recently created a website to offer needed resources for the COVID-19 period. The startup is helping health organizations and Nigerian government to create mass testing centers.

These mass testing centers include drive-through testing sites and booth testing sites. This will help attend to high volume of patients for COVID-19 samples and send to a centralized laboratory for processing.

Gradely is a personalized learning platform for educators and parents to make a difference in their child’s learning outcomes and produce more globally competitive learners. They currently operate in Nigeria. Gradely recently extended its tech expertise to the education system, to help students and teachers currently stuck at home continue their education during the COVID-19 lockdown.

The Ed-tech startup is using its AI-driven educational tool to assist students further their education and not experience disruption to their learning. This will be highly essential as schools begin to adopt home-schooling due to the pandemic.

54gene is genomics research, services and development company addressing the need to include under-represented African genomic data in research. They currently operate in Nigeria. 54gene recently piloted its first COVID-19 mobile laboratory, which aims to expand testing across the country.

Their mobile lab removes the restriction imposed by permanent buildings and allows them to quickly offer services to multiple states due to the ease of transport and the mobile capability it provides. They have also helped build capacity by equipping molecular scientists with the necessary skill set required to handle the instruments in the mobile lab as they would in regular molecular testing laboratories.

Ultra Red Technologies is a Product Design and Prototyping firm that does 3D printing. They currently operate in Kenya. Ultra Red recently printed plastic face shields to fill a gap within COVID-19.

They have also designed a 3D printed prototype for a ventilator adaptor that could allow doctors to treat two or more patients at once if necessary. Also, Ultra Red is working with an established medical equipment distributor to administer testing on sets of artificial lungs.

aSurveyor is a digital fruit surveyor. They currently operate in South Africa. a Surveyor recently launched a mobile app, Ukweli, to help exporters or Agri-traders to account for food waste that occurs in the process of transporting crops from farm to final consumer.

They seek to create trust and transparency amongst farmers, customers, insurers and transporters through the mobile app. Thus, the Ukweli app will make collated data available to stakeholders who could help mitigate food loss and waste. Ultimately, a Surveyor would be using their app to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of hunger eradication, especially during COVID-19.

Well, those were some of the African innovations for COVID-19 thus far!