In the quest for sustainable development, there is a need for collaboration across public, private and social-impact sectors to enhance growth and positive change. AfriTech XYZ is dedicated to bridging these sectors, and connecting African start-ups with mentors and experts in the UK and US.
To help achieve this, AfriTech XYZ has partnered with globally renowned legal firm Hogan Lovells, to provide pro bono legal advice to a group of award-winning African social entrepreneurs as part of Hogan Lovells (HL) BaSE Catalyst. The programme delivered a workshop to four innovative tech start-ups across Africa, providing them pro bono legal advice to support them in tackling some of the most pressing challenges we face today, including employment, food security, and biodiversity loss.
Hogan Lovells is an American-British law firm co-headquartered in London and Washington, D.C. It is a top 10 global legal services, and was listed within Forbes' list of America's Top Trusted Corporate Law Firms 2019.
Speaking on AfricTech XYZ and its impact was founder of Do it Now Now, Bayo Adelaja. Do it Now Now is the parent organisation of AfriTech XYZ, and is committed to the empowerment of Black people through providing access to opportunities for social mobility, financial inclusion entrepreneurship, and employment. Adelaja said: 'At Do it Now Now, we have a human-centered approach that ensures that people are fully engaged and empowered, and can contribute to their communities through the skills and resources that they have been exposed to. We are all about positive change and we believe that every start-up that is a part of our initiatives can lead, influence, and contribute to a future that is beneficial for all. With HL BaSE Catalyst we had about 200 applications to work with leading lawyers from Hogan Lovells and other organisations. It was a fantastic opportunity for these four tech entrepreneurs to have access to in-depth knowledge and learn about how to resolve issues and plan for the future'.
Commenting on the value of the HL BaSE Catalyst programme for entrepreneurs, Olumide Ogunbanjo, Chief Operating Officer at Agrodata, one of the beneficiaries of the initiative, noted: 'With the free legal support and training we received, we were able to improve our documentation. The training enabled us to restructure our agreement with the farmers and how we use data law to collect and aggregate data for agricultural use'.
Yasmin Waljee, Hogan Lovells International Pro Bono Partner, said: 'We are pleased to have showcased our work with Afritech XYZ. The collaboration provided an opportunity to address some of the challenges that local businesses in Africa face. Our support and shared value approach highlight the firm’s global commitment to playing a leadership role in driving inclusive and sustainable growth compelling positive change through pro bono and community investment activity'.
Watch the video about the workshop here. Hogan Lovells worked with social enterprise Giving Back Films, a carbon neutral film production company to make the video. As part of the project, Giving Back Films gave each of the start-ups training on the best way to showcase their sustainability journey and create impactful content.
AfriTech XYZ, powered by Do it Now Now, works with African tech entrepreneurs and provides them with the mentoring and networks they need to build tech that will contribute to a better future for Africa.