Markit Opportunity crowned Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge champion

Markit Opportunity crowned Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge champion

Barclays Africa Group Limited (Barclays Africa) crowned Markit Opportunity the Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge champion at a panel submission judging event held at The Bandwidth Barn Accelerator in Cape Town last night. The pan-African challenge, under the Rise in Africa umbrella, which launched in July, invited teams of innovators to submit ideas to redefine the supply chain process and enable economic growth across Africa.

Represented by their CEO and Founder Ashley King-Bischof, Markit Opportunity, from Kenya, triumphed over four other innovative finalists, by demonstrating a scalable solution to improve incomes of smallholder farmers.

Markit Opportunity incentivises regional trade by leveraging mobile technology and logistics to create trusted, transparent and efficient supply chains. The company provides a mobile platform that connects traders in urban markets to farmers with real-time supply and demand statistics, as well as market related pricing.

The judging panel of industry experts including Erik Hersman, CEO of BRCK, Teju Ajani, regional content partnerships lead for YouTube and Ian Merrington, CEO of the Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative vigorously engaged the five finalists as they presented their concepts.

“When it came to selection process, the very high calibre of submissions provided some testing conversations for the judging panel. Today’s finalists are a great reflection of the rich vein of innovation emanating from the African continent,” says Ashley Veasey, CIO, Barclays Africa and judging panel member.

Markit Opportunity will receive $10 000 in support of their venture. In addition the judges were also so impressed by the Nigerian entrepreneur Job Oyebisi, representing Freshmart, that they awarded his idea a special prize of $5 000. The Freshmart App for Provenance will leverage the blockchain, enabling customers to track the provenance – the chronology of the ownership – of the produce they want to purchase.

In addition to their financial support both winners will receive mentorship from a Barclays Africa executive to help them kick-start their venture.

The Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge, which closed in September, was the first of several initiatives being extended into Africa through Rise with the aim to spark ideas to drive the digital evolution on the continent. Interested parties are invited to follow @ThinkRiseAfrica and visit for information on other Rise initiatives.


For more information please contact:

 Lexi Ball

Barclays Africa Group Media Relations

011 846 5934

072 992 0641


About Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge

 Traditional providers of financial services are being disrupted by new technologies, agile companies and innovative products. Barclays Africa is responding by partnering and collaborating with the innovators and entrepreneurs who drive disruption. The Barclays Africa Supply Chain Challenge is about supply chain transparency. The supply chain, the journey of a product from manufacturer to consumer, is often disjointed and inefficient and there is currently a huge amount of interest in finding ways to increase the transparency of the chain – not least of which is the use of blockchain technology.


About Rise

Rise is a global community that connects start-ups, corporates and experts to co-create the future of financial services, and beyond. Rise consists of physical sites located in the world’s top innovation ecosystems, as well as a digital platform that enables the members of the Rise community to connect, co-create and scale. We bring 325 years of expertise and resources from Barclays and partner with a curated range of global experts to create an ideal environment to help businesses grow. We are a melting pot of diverse skills and geographies, and at the heart of our community is open-innovation. Everyone is here to support and be supported by, fellow Rise members. Rise is defined by our members so we do everything we can to connect and empower them, accelerating their growth and inspiring them to develop scalable businesses that will change the world.

The My World of Tomorrow SA Innovation Awards have recognised Rise in Africa as their ‘Collaborative Innovation Winner’ for 2015.


For further information about Rise, please visit


About Barclays Africa Group

Barclays Africa Group Limited is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and is one of Africa’s largest financial services groups. We are uniquely positioned as a fully global, fully regional and fully local bank. We offer personal and business banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking, wealth and investment management as well as bancassurance.

Barclays Africa is 62.3% owned by Barclays Bank PLC (Barclays). At 31 December 2014, we had 847,8 million shares in issue and a market capitalisation of R154,0 billion. We operate in 12 countries with more than 41 thousand permanent employees and we have 12 million customers.

Our registered head office is in Johannesburg, South Africa and we have majority stakes in banks in Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania (Barclays Bank Tanzania and National Bank of Commerce), Uganda and Zambia. We also have representative offices in Namibia and Nigeria. Barclays Bank PLC has operations in Egypt and Zimbabwe which are an integral part of our African business and continue to be run by Barclays Africa operationally.


For further information about Barclays Africa, please visit


About Barclays

Barclays is an international financial services provider engaged in personal, corporate and investment banking, credit cards and wealth management with an extensive presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia. Barclays’ purpose is to help people achieve their ambitions – in the right way. With 325 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs over 130,000 people. Barclays moves, lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.

For further information about Barclays, please visit

Post Categories: Entrepreneur News, Financial News, Innovation News

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