14 teams from seven countries are making their way to Kigali for the DataHack4FI Season 3 finale, which takes place on 22 and 23 August. The teams are made up of data enthusiasts, many of whom are aspiring data scientists, and young tech entrepreneurs. Over the course of the competition the teams have been developing a data driven solution for a challenge their community faces. The top two teams from each country will present their solutions to a panel of expert judges in Kigali and stand the chance to win $25,000 in seed funding.

In order to win the grand prize, teams will need to show the judges that their solution uses data to address financial or economic inclusion as well as address local challenges. This year, over 40 teams made up of 228 participants competed at national levels in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia. Our past winners were Mobiticket (Season 1), a service that allows people to book, purchase and receive their bus tickets through their mobile phones, and WazInsure (Season 2), who work with insurance companies to help them better profile their customers.

But winning the competition is not the only way for teams to secure finance; we have invited a group of investors to attend the Data Fest event and they are keen to see what the teams bring to the table. The two-day event will have something for everyone. Day one includes panel discussions and the pitches from the competing teams. If you attend day two, you could compete in the sponsored hackathon, attend an investor masterclass or engage with our partners.

insight2impact, with support from the Mastercard Foundation, Microsoft and Liquid Telecom are completing the third season of the DataHack4FI Innovation Competition. In collaboration with 10 innovation hubs and other key partners, DataHack4FI promotes the use of data and data analytics to solve business challenges and encourages pan-African collaboration by creating opportunities for data enthusiasts and emerging tech companies to partner in developing new solutions that address local needs.

Follow the competition and the participants using #DataHack4FI and at www.datahack4fi.org. For more information contact comms@cenfri.org or candiceb@finmark.org.za.