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UK Department of International Trade to join SA winners at London Tech Week

The UK’s Department of International Trade has announced that it will accompany two Africa Tech Week winners to attend London Tech Week which kicks off today and runs until Friday (14 June).

The delegation includes Digital Kungfu CEO Matt Brown and Nkgwete IT Solutions managing director Sidikka Osman (pictured above).

Brown received the Best Technology Startup award, while Osman was awarded the Africa Tech Woman of the Year accolade at Africa Tech Week which was held in March in Cape Town.

The UK’s Department of International Trade will later this year host the Prosperity Startup Games in Cape Town

In a statement today, the DIT explained that it was accompanying the two to London Tech Week to explore and establish relationships and synergies between Africa and the UK within the technology and innovation sector.

The five-day event aims to connect international communities from across the tech and innovation spectrum.

Commenting in the same statement, the department’s director for technology for Africa Elena Williams said London Tech Week is the ideal platform for startups to connect with accelerators, corporates and others across the industry.

Williams pointed out that the UK is a “global leader” in digital tech investment and that it has a thriving tech community. London, she said, is the third best global startup ecosystem, offering “endless” opportunities for companies looking to expand.

She added that the innovation partnerships which her department has established — such as the roll-out of digital skills and entrepreneurship programmes and the UK-SA Tech Hub — are a “unique opportunity” for the UK to work with SA tech entrepreneurs.

“Later this year, we will also be hosting the first ever Prosperity Startup Games in Cape Town which are aimed at helping early-stage companies to improve their investor readiness, pitch for investment, share knowledge and expertise, as well as enhance trade and investment between the UK and South Africa,” said Williams.

‘Fantastic opportunity’

Brown, commenting in the same statement, said his production company is  “thrilled” to have been invited by the UK-SA Tech Hub and the DIT to attend London Tech Week.

He said that access to international markets is an essential piece of the startup’s scaling strategy and that to have access to established networks of industry peers, venture capitalists and technology leaders from the European tech capital is a “fantastic opportunity” for the firm from both a networking and a deal-making perspective.

“Digital Kungfu has quadrupled in size in the past six months, and our executive team is evaluating expansion opportunities in new markets like the UK,” added Brown.

Osman said she is looking forward to representing South Africa and particularly SA women in the technology space.

“Technology is key to unlocking Africa’s potential and I am looking forward to learning about new technologies, meet thought leaders and identify potential opportunities in the technology sector for South African female entrepreneurs that will contribute to sustainable growth and development in the ICT sector,” added Osman.

Featured image: Nkgwete IT Solutions managing director Sidikka Osman (Africa Tech Week)

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