#FastTrackTech helps Malian start-ups make their way in the digital world

27 octubre 2021
ITC News

It is possible to be an innovator without being an entrepreneur. This fact is often a hitch for start-up founders. It is better to be prepared if you want to steer a company’s marketing and management. In partnership with the non-governmental organisation (NGO) Malistartup and Mali’s Information and Communication Technologies Agency (AGETIC), the #FastTrackTech Africa project organised a training session on digital marketing tools on 15th of September. About 40 tech companies from Bamako were able to benefit from this free training.

Strengthening skills

The classroom-based training session focused on three topics which are essential for anyone who wishes to seize the opportunities of digital marketing: inbound marketing, content strategy and collaborative work tools. Among the participants, many got in touch with these topics for the first time. “Today, it is not enough to have the ambition to create a product or a service. Technological progress continues to accelerate, and web and social media marketing have become compulsory. Digital marketing, however, is still far from being a strength of Mali’s start-ups. The mission of Malistartup is to train entrepreneurs in this field. The organisation of this training course is a godsend for our members," explains Malistartup’s president Mamadou Sidibé. With 200 members, the young organisation promotes the interests of Mali's tech companies among government authorities. It seeks support measures to develop Mali’s digital eco-system. “Our start-ups lack seed funding and suitable regulations. They also need support and training in communication, management and entrepreneurial leadership,” states Mamadou Sidibé.

Promoting cooperation

Initiated by the #FastTrackTech project, the training session has encountered great success among the participants. Malistartup requests more activities of this type, and so does AGETIC, which is in favour of bringing the public and private sectors together. AGETIC’s self-proclaimed mission is to modernise the Malian administration. But there is more to it than that. “The agency employs about a hundred people, all experts in digital technology. We aim at making our infrastructure and human resources available to incubators in the country. In doing so, we position ourselves as an incubator for incubators and support Mali's digital transformation,” explains Bakari Kouyate, manager of the AGETIC incubator. The training session on September 15th is a concrete example: AGETIC has made its offices available to the trainers and participants free of charge. Bakari Kouyate concludes with enthusiasm: “Digital technology is everywhere and is transforming our social habits. We are convinced that mastering the challenges of this transformation is crucial. This Master Class gave the participants the means to communicate and sell themselves better on the web. By hosting this training, AGETIC was able to show its operational support for digital start-ups in Mali.”

Financed by Canada, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands Trust Fund V, the #FastTrackTech project is implemented by the International Trade Centre. Thanks to a targeted coaching and training offer as well as matchmaking with potential clients and investors, the #FastTrackTech project, since October 2019, is committed along-side digital entrepreneurs who aspire to international growth in Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Mali, Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia.