1888EC

We are a venture studio. We create startups, provide expertise, co-invest and rapidly launch ideas to market.

Founded in 2020 by Solomon Kassa (TV Personality, tech consultant, strategist, author, and public speaker), we aspire to be the fastest launch pad for disruptive innovations and businesses from Ethiopia that will champion wealth creation, digital transformation, and employment.

Our Founding Story

1888EC is named after the historic Battle of Adwa. The “EC” holds multiple meanings, including, Entrepreneurship Center, Equity Central and Ethiopian Calendar.

This multi-layer representation of our past victory is adopted to inspire new victories against poverty and other challenges of the future – through entrepreneurial grit and equity-based development.

Our
Vision

To be the launchpad of successful startups.

Our
Mission

To solve society’s grand challenges through entrepreneurship.

Our
Value

We commit to creating sustainable ventures.

Our Approach

Our venture studio offers a repeatable approach where a valid problem statement is identified, a team built around it and investments are made to quickly enter the market. As of now, we are sector agnostic, however, we require that a startup has a clear path to profitability and scalability to be hosted in 1888EC.

We raise investment from multiple sources including equity (local + international), proceeds from professional services offered by our sister entities and grants provided by developmental partners.

Ideate

We maintain an open ideation process where all ideas are welcomed and heard – whether they are generated internally or externally.

Validate

Every idea sounds good at first. We put an idea through validation to assess demand, feasibility, unit economics, marketability, investor interest, and more.

Create

We build a team around the project and rapidly develop a prototype or MVP (minimum viable product) to take to market and assess our customers’ feedback.

Spinout

Successful startups require top talent and investment. We will provide all support needed to ensure rapid incorporation – as fast as humanly possible.

Scale

Once a company is established/spanned-out, our role will transition into governance where in tandem with our investors and partners, focus on realizing the full potential of the startup.

Repeat

Yes, we will ideate, develop, grow, exit, and repeat!

Our Projects

Triopia

An e-tourism marketplace dedicated to marketing and promoting local experiences and destinations worldwide.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: <$500K

A robust pharmaceutical marketplace for businesses that connects the pharma supply chain in Ethiopia.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: $2.5M – $5M

A dedicated financial services company that delivers loans to policy projects in Ethiopia.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: <$500K

Enibla

A network of outlets that serve lightning-fast Ethiopian cuisine for the working-class urbanite.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: <$500K

EthioSpare.com

A trusted source for retailing top-quality vehicle spare parts, delivered straight to your door.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: <$500K

Limar

An ed-tech platform that leverages crowdsourced content to distribute high-quality, affordable and accessible educational content.

Stage: Early
Investment needs: $5M – $10M

Why 1888?

Network

Through our vast network of partners, management and advisory board, we are best positioned to facilitate meetings with the right people.

Impact

Resources

We offer initial investment, office space and shared administrative resources to ensure low-cost operation of our startups.

Governance

We ensure sound governance practices are in place early on.

Impact

Sustainability

Create young entrepreneurs driven by critical problem-solving thinking and “can do” mindset.

Job
Creation

Provide employment opportunities for the youth in Ethiopian and beyond with the emphasis on women.

Ecosystem
Building

Contribute to a startup ecosystem development through our venture building.

Digital
Economy

Produce a tech/ knowledge-based economy and bring digital transformation.

1888EC Consulting

1888EC Consulting is a boutique consulting firm which is part of 1888EC.

1888EC Consulting is home to experienced business and technology consultants and offers a wide range of services: including software/systems development, strategy consulting, business process improvement, technology planning and implementation, as well as data analytics.

Our team brings over 10 years of diverse experience in the consulting industry globally, and we are passionate about helping our clients to achieve their business objectives. We specialize in adopting cutting-edge technologies to develop innovative solutions that drive our clients’ success.

As part of a portfolio of the first of its kind venture studio, working with us means supporting innovative startups that we are investing in to advance economic growth and development in Ethiopia.

Our clients

1888EC Spaces

We also offer the perfect blend of work environments to suit your needs:

Our Team

Solomon Kassa
Founder

Teshager Amare
Head of Operations

Kibru Demeke
Tech Lead

Yordanos Alemayehu
Studio Manager

Hulubanchi Banthihun
Head of Finance

Our Team

Solomon Kassa
Founder
Teshager Amare
Head of Operations
Kibru Demeke
Tech Lead

Yordanos Alemayehu
Studio Manager

Hulubanchi Banthihun
Head of Finance

Our Team

Solomon Kassa
Founder

Teshager Amare
Head of Operations

Kibru Demeke
Tech Lead

Yordanos Alemayehu
Studio Manager

Hulubanchi Banthihun
Head of Finance

1888EC Advisory

Amrote Abdela
Regional Director, Microsoft 4Afrika
Amrote is Regional Director of Microsoft 4Afrika Initiatives. One of the initiatives she leads is Innovation 4Gov, a program that helps deliver innovative public-sector services through digital support & co-funding.
Samuel Alemayehu
Global Managing Director of Cambridge Industries Ltd
Samuel is a Global Managing Director of Cambridge Industries Ltd, a company with a vision to implement pioneering infrastructure projects in Africa. Samuel started his career in Silicon Valley as a serial entrepreneur. He was the founder of three successful tech ventures based in California & after that, he was an Associate at Venrock Associates investing in consumer media services around the world.
Henok Assefa
Managing Partner, Precise Consult
Henok is a leading advisor in business strategy & economic development in Ethiopia. He is the founder Precise Consult International. Henok has led 200+ strategic engagements with investors. He has also led major engagements with government agencies & international development agencies including the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Shell Foundation, USAID & DFID. He is also a founding member of the Addis Abeba Angels Network which is looking to invest into the emerging technology space of Ethiopia.
Selam Ayele
Director, Antler
Selam is a director at Antler. Before joining Antler, she has worked as a tech startup scout for an investment firm, as business development consultant for various initiatives & as Country Manager for a business scale-up accelerator across a total of 3 continents & more than 20 countries.
Mirafe G. Marcos
Ethiopian Country Director of Africa Leadership Group (ALG) - ALX Addis
Mirafe is the Ethiopia Country Director for the African Leadership (AL) Group & the General Manager for ALX Addis, a new social impact enterprise start-up that invests in youth talent development, entrepreneurial leadership & business incubation. Prior to ALX Addis, Mirafe was the Senior Director of the Agribusiness & Markets division at the Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) reporting to the CEO.
Stephen Ozoigbo
Venture Catalyst, Managing Partner, LIONS@FRICA CEO, The Africa Technology Foundation
Stephen is a serial entrepreneur, investor & advisor to multiple technology startups. He is currently the CEO of the African Technology Foundation, a Silicon Valley corporation that seeks to globalize African technologies by providing access to resources that effectively address & manage the most pressing technological challenges on the continent.
Bahiya Robinson
Founder & CEO, VC Include
Bahiyah is the CEO &Founder of VC Include, a platform designed to build & support diverse, institutional-grade emerging managers in Venture Capital, Private Equity & Impact Investment. Since 2001, she has led multiple technology, social impact initiatives & public-private partnerships in the US, Brazil & across Sub-Saharan Africa since 2001. These collaborations as well as investments have been recognized over the years by the Knight Foundation, Echoing Green, Entrepreneur, CNN &Forbes.
Melissa Sassi
Chief Penguin of IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator, Founder at MentorNations
Melissa is the Global Head of IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator focused on empowering early-stage startups through technology & business acceleration. She spent several years in Microsoft's Airband Initiative where she was an internet & energy access impact investor. Melissa is also the Founder & CEO of MentorNations, a youth-led digital skills movement that has taught tens of thousands of young people to code across twelve countries.
Bernard Laurendeau
Managing Partner, Laurendeau & Associates, Co-Founder, Ethiopians in Tech
Bernard is the Managing Partner at Laurendeau & Associates. In Ethiopia, he is advising clients mainly in the public sector in digital transformation & startup ecosystem building. Prior to founding his advisory firm, Bernard was the Regional Director for Africa of a Silicon Valley-based big data analytics startup helping government officials in low- & middle-income countries make evidence-based decisions.
David Solomon
CEO, Good Machine
David has a 20-year history developing new tech in Silicon Valley. Most recently, he built a profitable business that improves at-sea transparency, of even the smallest vessels, in over 35 countries worldwide. Leveraging a low-cost, technology solution, Dave & his team are providing agency & opportunity for a constantly growing community of the 50 million small-scale fishers worldwide. He is an expert at building collaborative ventures & creating new markets for impact businesses.
Bethelehem Tilahun
Founder & Managing Director, SoleRebel, Garden of Coffee
Bethlehem is the Founder & Managing Director of soleRebels, Africa's fastest-growing footwear company & first to emerge from a developing nation. As a social enterprise creating impact, soleRebels became one of the first World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) Fair Trade-certified footwear companies for its practices. She also launched The Republic of Leather, designing sustainable luxury leather goods & Garden of Coffee retail outlets in Ethiopia.
Kommy W/Mariam, PhD
Master Inventor & Chief Scientist of IBM Research - Africa
Dr. Kommy oversees scientific & technical direction at IBM Research - Africa & has been at the forefront of advancing BigData, AI & blockchain, while also ensuring these technologies are applied towards solving Africa’s grand challenges such as trade logistics, food supply chain management, financial inclusion & climate resiliency for small scale farming. Dr. Kommy holds more than 150 patents & applications.
Ermais Eshetu
Advisory Partner, Grant Thornton
Ermias currently runs the Ethiopian advisory services at Grant Thornton, a global advisory and assurance provider. Prior to that Ermias was the CEO of Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX) and led the efforts in building a modern marketing system via the launch of an e-Trade platform across regions. Ermias was also part of an establishment who founded Zemen Bank in Ethiopia, one of the most successful technology led bank where he served as Board Director and an Executive VP. Currently Ermias chairs a number of Boards including AmCham in Ethiopia.
Yoseph Ayele
Co-founder, Edmund Hillary Fellowship; Co-creator, Global Impact Visa
Yoseph is co-founder and former CEO of EHF, a global network of 500+ world-class entrepreneurs and investors who are leading positive impact. He co-created the Global Impact Visa with the New Zealand Government as a public-private partnership, and implemented it to become the most entrepreneur-friendly immigration program in the world. Prior, Yoseph helped grow Inflection, a Silicon Valley software company. He has lived in 6 countries and studied at Harvard, Cambridge, and Victoria University of Wellington.
Dr. Azarias Reda
Engineering Manager, Uber
Dr. Azarias is an Engineering Manager at Uber Technologies in San Francisco, CA where he leads Uber's experimentation APIs platform for ridesharing and food delivery. Previously, he was the Chief Technology Officer of the US Republican Party leading up to the 2016 presidential elections. Dr. Azarias was also the co-founder and CTO of FreshCar, a software startup that was backed by Techstars. He earned his PhD in Computer Science from the University of Michigan, and is passionate about startups, software for emerging markets and technology leadership.

Partners

Contact.

+251 978 448 837 info@1888.studio acadoo-medizin.com