Spellafrica , a mobile learning tool to improve education in Africa


I was a victim of poor basic education. I passed out of elementary school not being able to spell my name let alone read and write. I totally understand what it feels like to be limited by education.

After watching the American movie “Akeela and the Bee“, I was thrilled on how an 11 years old girl could spell so well. In a bit to improve my vocabulary, I started learning a word daily from the dictionary, in a short while I discovered I was truly learning something great, I wanted others to benefit from idea of learning a word daily, but I remembered those who could not afford a dictionary let alone have time to sit down and study it.  So i started thinking of a technology solution that is affordable and efficient and then the idea of using SMS came in.

Your products and services :

As a technology driven organization, we are disrupting the standard of education in the continent of Africa to meet with the UN target goal #2,” to ensure that all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, and achieve literacy and numeric skills”.

In January 2013, we introduced a simple technology solution known as the mVocabulary. mVocabulary is utilized to teach English vocabulary to young adults and youths across Africa. Since launched, over 55,000 users have benefited from the program. 

 We are taking it to the next level by developing a Chabot using a high tech Artificial intelligence Solution (AIS) developed by IBM Watson. Think of it as a Personal Digital English Teacher.

Sabi is a Chatbot for education and will serve as a personal teacher. In the first phase, she will be able to teach key concepts of the English language including reading, comprehension, pronunciation and punctuation. She will have the ability to assign homework and tests to the user based on their learning capability and progress. 

Your success factors

Since inception  in 2013. We have recorded the following metrics on the mVocabulary programme:

Over 1,850,000 English vocabulary message was distributed via the mVocabulary 
Over 200,000 minutes spent teaching English via phone calls
2000 users are takes the monthly exams
222 people who have found jobs through our local job network

Your factors differentiating and disruptive compared to the existing

 At SpellAfrica, we pride our self as a language teaching organization and not necessary a mobile app startups.   We provide English lessons via mobile, we monitor and evaluate the progress of our learners. upon graduation we offer them a certificate of completion. Lastly, we connect them to local blue collar jobs providers. 

Your business model (how do you make money?)

 Although we are a registered nonprofit organization, we charge a service fee of N100 Naira by user pay month.  To attract customers, we are using the fremium and premium strategy.

A few words about your competitor

We have three notable competitor dragging this space with us. They are https://www.duolingo.com/, https://www.memrise.com/ and  http://englishcentral.com/

Unlike our competitors, all SpellAfrica services  are designed to work with low end mobile phones, thereby reducing the cost of data subscription. Interesting, the mVocabulay program does not require mobile data to work. As an African startup incubated in Africa by Africans for Africa. We understands the needs of our market and that is our competitive edge over our competitors

To learn more about you



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