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Bridging Africa's Digital Divide

Brastorne Enterprises, founded in 2013 in Botswana by Thato Stimela and Naledi Magowe, aims to bridge the digital divide in Africa by connecting those without internet access to crucial services. The company was created to address the needs of the 300 million feature phone users across Africa, who often cannot afford smartphones or mobile data. By leveraging USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) technology, Brastorne provides app-like services without the need for internet, offering access to trade, market prices, information, and chat on basic feature phones.

The success of Brastorne is evident in its rapid expansion and positive impact on marginalized communities. Since its inception, the company has grown to over 1.8 million users across Africa. In Botswana alone, Brastorne has reached over 1 million users, with 350,000 monthly users. The company’s innovative approach to connecting rural areas with information, markets, and community services has garnered attention, earning Brastorne recognition as a winner of the 2022 AYuTe Africa Challenge.

Brastorne’s suite of products, including mAgri, Mpotsa, and Vuka, empowers users by providing access to essential services without requiring expensive smartphones or data plans. This has proven especially valuable to farmers, who have seen a 250% increase in yields by using Brastorne’s platform. The company’s success has spurred plans for further expansion to other African countries like Ethiopia, Madagascar and Guinea. By partnering with telecommunications companies, Brastorne continues to advance its mission of connecting the unconnected and fostering a more digital economy in Africa.


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