South Africa
Earth Observation
Space Technology
Navigation Technology

The Africa Earth Observation (AEO) Challenge is an annual open innovation challenge aimed at sourcing novel space technologies since 2016. This challenge seeks to drive entrepreneurial activity in the African space industry and promote awareness of the value of earth observation data across the continent and in multiple sectors such as water and food security, mining, logistics, insurance, and many more.

The challenge aims to;

  • To identify the most promising innovators, entrepreneurs and early-stage businesses across Africa and develop them into sustainable companies
  • To develop Africa’s geospatial readiness so that African businesses can service African demand for geospatial intelligence


  • Financial Support: Cash prizes in the form of a grant of up to $10 000 in total (to be distributed across the top three winners).
  • Incubation & Mentorship: 4-month online incubation and virtual mentorship.
  • Cloud Services: Up to $ 10 000 worth of Amazon Web Services Activate credits (to be distributed across all three winners).
  • Technical Support: Technical support will be available to the Challenge participants from the leading EOD specialising organisations.
  • Data Packages: 3 months access to Maxar Imagery Portal Securewatch; Access to Planet Labs data & imagery for R&D use; Access to ESRI sample data, apps, notebooks, and deep learning models.
  • Intellectual Property Support: Intellectual property-related support services from intellectual property attorneys, Von Seidels.
  • Technology Subscriptions: Various packages of subscriptions to ArcGIS, user conference pass and ESRI Imagery Summit.
  • Media Publicity: Feature in interviews and editorials via selected media channels.

Click here to apply. 

Full description


The Challenge is open to businesses across the African continent.

All submissions must demonstrate a clear application of EOD

Early-stage funding/angel investor-ready businesses (*TRL 8/9 and *BRL 1/2/3)

Thematic areas include: 

  • Climate change; 
  • Disaster risk reduction; 
  • Energy and minerals; 
  • Sustainable urban/rural development;
  • Ecosystem services; 
  • Food security and agriculture; and
  • Satellite navigation. 
Closing date
Agriculture, forestry and fishing
​Mining and quarrying
​Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply
Water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities