How can we help Africa’s tech start-ups? Last month in this column, I wrote: “How do you build a solution (https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/opinion/columnists/2019-11-12-kate-thompson-ferreira-listen-up-josh-more-black-techies-in-sa-will-indeed-spur-innovation/) that has the reach and scale of something like M-Pesa ...? You have to know that [X] is a pressing issue ... and you have to have the cultural context of what ... alternatives would be.”

Here I was speaking about the need for diversity in the tech space. I stand by this entirely, but we also know there is more to success than a good idea born out of local knowledge. There are also the not-so-simple matters of finances, market appetite, pricing strategy, packaging, marketing and customer service. The list goes on, but much of this boils down to a need for what I’m calling “fat”: funding, access and talent.

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