Nairobi-based e-learning startup M-Shule has emerged runner-up at the 2017 Global Edtech Startup Awards (GESA) held in London.

M-Shule was one of 15 finalists that took part in the final event which saw Japanese startup Arcterus being declared winner and Indian platform MentorMind took third place.

Commenting on the fit, M-Shule CEO and founder, Claire Mongeau said: “We were honoured to win first runner-up in the GES Awards and promote African edtech to the world.”

Mongeau said at the end of the awards, one of the judges spoke about the criteria that had been used to select the winning startups, namely scalability, a strong business model, innovation and ambition.

“I think M-Shule combines all four of those attributes in bringing personalised learning technology through SMS (using USSD codes) to African primary students for the first time,” she said.

M-Shule’s-which also won the Kenya round of Seedstars World competition is a platform that makes use of artificial intelligence (AI) and SMS to deliver personalised, accessible education to primary school students across Africa.

The Global EdTech Startup Awards (GESA) is the world’s largest EdTech startup competition. Initiated by MindCET (Israel), GESA was co-founded by the Open Education Challenge (EU) and EdTech UK in 2014.

Over 2000 startups from across the world apply to GESA, for the opportunity to be given a global voice and to be crowned the Most Promising EdTech Startup of the year. In addition to promoting the best EdTech startups, GESA helps to build local edtech ecosystems, connect to a global market and provide mentoring.