ZEP-RE InsurTech Hackathon

Welcome to Zep Re, where innovation and transformation are at the heart of everything we do. We are excited to share with you our recent hackathon in Rwanda, which brought together some of the most talented minds in the technology and insurance industries to collaborate and develop cutting-edge solutions that can revolutionize the insurance industry.

At Zep Re, we believe that technology can be a catalyst for change and can help solve some of the most pressing challenges facing the insurance industry. We are committed to exploring new technologies and collaborating with startups and other organizations to develop innovative solutions that can enhance the customer experience, improve operational efficiency, and reduce risk.

The hackathon we hosted in Rwanda was a testament to this commitment, and it was an incredible opportunity for us to engage with the brightest minds in the industry and develop solutions that can transform the insurance landscape in Africa and beyond.


Over the course of three days, participants from across the technology and insurance industries worked collaboratively to develop solutions that addressed a range of challenges facing the insurance industry. These challenges included increasing access to insurance, improving customer experience, and reducing fraud. The event witnessed the participation of 28 teams that pitched their ideas, out of which 5 teams were selected for a further 6-month acceleration in the ZEP-RE Insurtech Program.

Key Hackathon Highlights:

► We received a total of 91 applicants from diverse backgrounds, including software developers, data scientists, insurance professionals, and entrepreneurs. We also had different nationalities from Tanzania, Cameroon, Nigeria, Kenya, UAE. 7 of the teams were located outside Rwanda and were accommodated through online participation.

► A total of 31 teams were selected to attend the hackathon, of which 28 teams attended. This made a total of 52 participants, of which 7 participants attended online.

► Dominant sectors were fin-tech (12 startups), agri-tech (9 startups), digital platforms and AI.

► Notable attendance included Antony Eliot (Head of Research and Development at Zurich-Re), Moses (Founder at EdenCare), and Alexio Manyonde (CTO at ZEP-RE). We also had insurance experts from Sanlam, Soras, Mayfair and ZEP-RE, and tech experts such as Hadad (Head of Engineering at Exuus).

► Given the sectors of the participants, 3 industry areas were added to the expertise: life insurance, motor insurance, and agriculture insurance. The key challenges included access to data from the insurance industries for the participants to develop their solutions. These were compensated through one-on-one coaching from each industry expert.

► Participants showed concern on the fairness of the selection, given the fact that the selected teams were at stages, some having already working solutions or prototypes and others were only ideas. To ensure transparency and fairness, the jury selection criteria were balanced to ensure all teams are given equal chances, regardless of their stages. A detailed selection criteria document was shared with the participants.

► After filling in the scorecard, a discussion was facilitated for the final selection of the top 5 teams to be accelerated in the ZEP-RE Innovation Hub.

► After the selection, the teams that were not selected asked if there will be any interest or support from ZEP-RE or the insurance space. We recommend ZEP-RE to go through the remaining teams to see if there could be any solution of interest.

► One startup in the top 5 teams is located in Tanzania. The incubation will require a hybrid component to support this team.

The selected teams will receive 6 months of support to commercialize their products/services in insurtech and potentially receive investment. The curriculum will be developed by WSHK in close collaboration with ZEP-RE. These will include sharing key learnings from the Hackathon implementation as well as insights from ZEP-RE.
The Orientation Day for the 5 teams will be on April 4, 2023.

We are incredibly proud of the success of the hackathon, and we are committed to continuing to drive innovation and collaboration in the insurance industry. We believe that the solutions developed during the hackathon have the potential to transform the industry and create a more efficient, customer-centric, and sustainable insurance landscape in Africa and beyond.

We look forward to sharing more updates on our innovative solutions and partnerships in the future.