AFD Digital Challenge 2021

For the fifth consecutive year, the Agence française de développement is committed to supporting high-impact digital actors in Africa. For this new edition, the AFD Digital Challenge wished to combine the challenges of the digital transition with those of climate protection and biodiversity, in line with Goal 13 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The competition is aimed at start-ups, associations, and research centers on the African continent, which offer innovative solutions to reduce the carbon impact of economic activities, promote the sustainable, participatory, and civic management of natural resources, and to promote a sustainable economic activity in accordance with environmental issues.

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The 10 winning projects will receive financial support, as well as support to accelerate their project and participate in the development of solutions to protect the climate and biodiversity. They will be supported by AFD through an “acceleration pack”, a technical and financial support.

Selection phases

  • An application review phase, validating the eligibility of applicants and pre-selecting 30 start-ups on the basis of an analysis of the projects, their innovative nature, their economic model, their impact, and the role of digital technology;
  • An in-depth analysis phase by AFD experts of the pre-selected projects;
  • A final selection by the jury composed of AFD experts.


  • 20 000 €
  • International Visibility
  • Customized support
  • A tailor-made support program “Acceleration pack”


Startups, associations and research centers developing digital solutions on the themes presented below are eligible-

Reducing the digital footprint:

  • Digital tools and services for the reduced energy consumption of networks and data centers,
  • eco-construction and tools used to reduce the consumption of terminals and boxes,
  • eco-design of digital equipment and services,
  • recycling of electronic waste.

Innovating to build a sustainable economy:

  • Digital technology to reduce the impact of land, air, sea and river transport,
  • digital technology to promote sustainable territories,
  • services numériques de diffusion de bonnes pratiques pour l’environnement et le climat à destination du secteur public, des entreprises et des citoyens,
  • digital services for the dissemination of best environmental and climate practices for the public sector, businesses and citizens,
  • digital services for green finance,​
  • digital tools and services for agro-ecology, traceability and limiting agricultural losses.

Preserving natural resources:

  • Preventing and reacting to natural disasters: data and prediction, warning systems, business continuity plans for climate incidents, civil protection systems, etc.
  • contributing to the preservation of ecosystems and helping the most vulnerable populations to adapt to climate change.

To sum up:

  • Your project is related to one of the themes presented above and detailed in the rules
  • Your project is already on the market and is in the seed/launch phase
  • Your project has a legal structure as well as a sustainable and autonomous business model
  • Digital technology is at the heart of your solution
Eligible Regions: African Countries

Application Process

  • Participants will submit their application to the Challenge via the online application form accessible to the public on the website and described under the Article 5 of the present Rules. Participants having submitted a complete online application form will receive an electronic mail confirming its application to the Challenge.
  • The online application form has two components:
    • An administrative component, concerning the Participant’s administrative and legal details (corporate name, date of creation, governance, etc.).
    • A descriptive component, concerning the qualitative details of the entrepreneurial project showcased by the Participant as part of the Challenge (corporate purpose, revenues, description of the service.s/product.s offered, etc.).
  • Any online application form providing inaccurate or incomplete information will not be considered and will lead to the Participant’s disqualification.
  • The Organiser will only accept and consider Deliverables submitted by Participants by the deadline and in compliance with the Regulation requirements. Participants agree to respond to any request for information or proof from the Organisers or the Service Provider.

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Application Deadline: June 11, 2021

Application ClosedOfficial link

For Further Queries

For any additional information please visit the official website. You can also contact the authorities through email at: [email protected]
Disclaimer: Youth Opportunities spreads opportunities for your convenience and ease based on available information, and thus, does not take any responsibility of unintended alternative or inaccurate information. As this is not the official page, we recommend you to visit the official website of opportunity provider for complete information. For organizations, this opportunity is shared with sole purpose of promoting “Access to Information” for all and should not be associated with any other purposes.

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