MMINDZS, a Ugandan startup has received the Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) grant of US$100,000. The Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) grant programme, sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will further develop the startup’s MYAccounts, a mobile money enabled accounting system for African small merchants and SMEs.
Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) funds individuals worldwide to create innovative ideas that can change the way we solve persistent global health and development challenges.
The programme saw a total of 1,800 applications submitted from 109 countries across six categories, including digital financial services for small merchants, where Ugandan entrepreneur Francis Otim, chief executive officer (CEO) of MMINDZS was selected to receive a US$100,000 grant.
Otim is to use the grant to develop his MYAccounts platform, the world’s first mobile money enabled accounting system, which is a low cost and easy-to-use accounting system with a host of additional features tailor-made for the African market. MYAccounts enables merchants to seamlessly view, track and account for all their customer and supplier payments made to their mobile phone, and aggregates this database of transactions to produce complete financial and stock records, customer invoices and receipts, printable financial statements and tax returns.
It is built specifically to solve the financial inclusion challenges of mobile money-using African merchants, enabling them to manage their business, access formal financial services, and grow into prosperous, sustainable and thriving enterprises.
Grand Challenges Explorations is an agile, accelerated grant initiative that accepts applications from individuals with bold ideas that show great promise. The Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) grant of $100,000 are awarded two times a year. Successful projects are also given opportunity to receive a follow-on grant of up to $1 million.
Applications for the next GCE round will open in September 2015.