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African female innovators take centre stage at the 2019 Vivatech Fair in France

African female innovators take centre stage at the 2019 Vivatech Fair in France

France

African female innovators exhibited a strong presence at the 2019 Vivatech Fair which opened on Thursday in Paris, France.

Women are core members of innovator delegations from Algeria, Morocco, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, African countries present at the expo.

According to the Chief Executive of Algerian based company Addex Technology, Djaoued Halal, gender parity is a matter of seeking efficiency.

It's not at all easy when you're a woman in a male environment to evolve professionally, and moreover when you're lead the creation of a startup, it's not easy at all, because often you're led by men who don't necessarily have the same vision as you or who aren't used to being led by a woman.

“It so happens that today women are very efficient… And so if you ask me if I’m giving them a chance, no! It is they who give me the chance to come to us, because they are efficient. And today parity in the company must be respected, by definition because if there is performance in women, they must be part of our company.”

More and more women are joining tech firms while others are creating and managing start-ups. Some are still finding the male-dominated field challenging.

“It’s not at all easy when you’re a woman in a male environment to evolve professionally, and moreover when you’re lead the creation of a startup, it’s not easy at all, because often you’re led by men who don’t necessarily have the same vision as you or who aren’t used to being led by a woman. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible. But personally, I received a lot of support from my father who encouraged me a lot and who somehow made me understand that even if you are a woman, you can do anything, said Boussoura Talla, the co-founder of Senegalese start up Settic.

African women are increasingly embracing technology. The start-ups present at the Vivatech Fair are trying to send a clear message at a time when Africa is innovating for women and by women.

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