Thirty projects selected for Digital Lab Africa 2018


The 2018 Digital Lab Africa (DLA) call for projects closed with a bang on 25 February with 730 entries from over 30 Sub-Saharan African countries. This overwhelming response confirms the importance and relevance of this programme in supporting emerging talent!

Digital Lab Africa’s selection committees* have chosen the 30 finalists who will compete in an online pitch competition. The finalists, made up of entrepreneurs and creators from the African continent, represent the new generation of talent in creative industries (virtual reality, web creation, digital music, video game and animation).

“We would like to thank all the candidates who applied for the DLA call for projects. The number of projects received, their quality and diversity strongly illustrate the dynamism and creativity of African audiovisual industries,” said Erika Denis, regional head of Media, Film & Music (French Embassy) and director of Digital Lab Africa.

From 26 April, the video pitch of the 30 competitors will be displayed online on a dedicated platform developed by Qwant, in partnership with Dailymotion Africa. This platform will allow internet users to anonymously vote for their favourite pitch (from 26 April to 9 May) without having to communicate their personal data.

“Qwant is proud to support Digital Lab Africa in promoting innovative projects driven by talent from the Sub-Saharan African region. We attach great importance to the value-creation and the achievement of ideas that emerge from the African continent, they very often put the economic project at the service of the human, what Qwant also tries to support in Europe and around the world,” said Eric Léandri, president of Qwant.

“Africa is creative, this a true challenge. Developing and increasing premium content from the talent of the continent is one of our main goals and the Digital Lab Africa is a milestone to reach it,” said Stanislas Balaÿ and Ashley Gnahoua, from Dailymotion Africa.

Chosen by the DLA Selection Committees, the 10 winners of the pitch competition will be revealed at NEXT, the innovation hub of the Cannes Film Festival Market, on Thursday, 10 May at 16h00, during a live session in the presence of some of the DLA partners.

The project that gathers the most votes on the platform will be awarded a special prize (DLA Audience Award) including an invitation (for one person) to one of the DLA industry events in France or in the Sub-Saharan African region (flight ticket, accommodation and accreditation covered by DLA).

Furthermore, the DLA 1st edition winning project, Un-Human by Shariffa Ali and Yetunde Dada (virtual reality category) will be introduced by its producer Antoine Cayrol from Atlas V.

The 10 winners will get a 3 000 euro cash prize and a tailor-made incubation programme to accelerate their project development with two mentors, from the French & Sub-Saharan African creative industries ecosystem (producers, distributors, broadcasters, experts, artists…), a residence period in France within a digital cluster/hub, and participation in industry events in France and/or the Sub-Saharan African region.

“It is with great pleasure that we will welcome at NEXT – the hub dedicated to innovation at the heart of the Cannes Film Market – the announcement of the results of the DLA Pitch Competition. We look forward to introducing these emerging African talents in the digital space,” said Julie Bergeron, head of Industry Programmes, Cannes Film Festival Market.

The 30 finalists in the DLA Pitch Competition are:


  • Dimbit by Feben Elias (ETHIOPIA)
  • Nwavu, the Blind Man by João Graça (MOZAMBIQUE)
  • Tales of Shaa by Rodney Masanga (ZIMBABWE)
  • The Brats Movie by Nildo Hassane Essa (MOZAMBIQUE)
  • Rapulani and Rapunzel by Yolanda Keabetswe Mogatusi (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Issa et l’arbre perdu by Arthur Ella (CAMEROON)

*Animation Selection Committee

Stuart Forrest, Triggerfish Animation Studios (South Africa) | Abel Kouamé, Afrika Toon (Ivory Coast) | Eric Réginaud, Ciclic (France) | Xavier Kawa-Topor, Nef Animation (France)


  • Man Must Chop by Razahk Issaka (GHANA)
  • Future Lab Africa by Jepchumba & Tegan Bristow (KENYA)
  • African God by Taf Hove (SOUTH AFRICA/ZIMBABWE)
  • The Spams by Howard James Fyvie (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • The Foxy Five by Jabulile Nadia Newman (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Mission K-danse by Marina Niava (Ivory Coast)

*Web Creation Selection Committee

Alexandre Rideau, Keewu Production, Lagardère studios (Senegal/France) | Heidelinde Blumers, ARTE (France) | Stanislas Balay, Dailymotion Africa (Ivory Coast/France) | Ashley Gnahoua, Dailymotion Africa (Ivory Coast/France) |Prof Barry Dwolatzky, Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct (South Africa)


  • Request Africa by Ali Dennis (KENYA)
  • Mbira Online by Tafadzwa Sharaunga (ZIMBABWE)
  • JokkoText by Mamadou Dione (SENEGAL)
  • Digital DJ by Chukwudi Obila (NIGERIA)
  • m-MuZiik by Patrick Mveng (CAMEROON)
  • The Rotoscope Orchestra by Magalela Mtshali (SOUTH AFRICA)

*Digital Music Selection Committee

Jérôme Galabert, Sakifo/Iomma (Reunion Island)| Sevi Spanoudi, Black Major (South Africa)|Lesley Donna Williams, Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct (South Africa)


  • Last Night A Haircut Saved My Life by Roxanne Dalton (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Re-Inventing The Cross by Awuor Onyango (KENYA)
  • II Worlds by Naomi van Niekerk & Arnaud van Vliet (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Cause and Effect by Francis Kamibili-Mzembe & Rodney Jonathan Likaku (MALAWI)
  • Street Hoopz by Amaebi Pere-Albert (NIGERIA)
  • Lucy Tour Guide by Abel Adane Seyoum (ETHIOPIA)

* Virtual Reality Selection Committee

Chloé Jarry, Camera Lucida (France)|Ulrico Grech-Cumbo, Deep VR (South Africa), Ng’endo Mukii (Kenya) | Ian Toullec, VR-Connection (France) |Caitlin Robinson, Electric South (South Africa)


  • Shadow Tongue by Alex Robert Ynclan & Thuso Terence Sibisi (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Drive Jozi by Ben Myres & Cukia Kimani (SOUTH AFRICA)
  • Project Lumpa by Mwaaba Alec Mugala (ZAMBIA)
  • The Orchard by David Kamunyu (KENYA)
  • Jilinde Game by Musafiri Mbilinyi (TANZANIA)
  • Rigobert’s Goat by Patrick Nguiamba Nloutsiri (CAMEROON)

*Video Game Selection Committee

Francis Ingrand, SNJV/Plug-In Digital (France), Nicholas Hall, Make Games SA/IESA (South Africa).


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