Nedbank Hackathon calls on talented developers to help shape an inclusive future for SMEs

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Financial inclusion is the cornerstone of meaningful and sustainable small business growth in South Africa. For the country’s SMEs to successfully expand, create employment opportunities, and further SA’s economic development, tailored, digitally-advanced financial solutions are essential.

Nedbank aims to deliver these solutions in abundance at its 2023 Innovate Hackathon, to be held on 1 and 2 December at the Nedbank Rivonia Campus in Sandton.

The Innovate Hackathon is hosted by Nedbank in partnership with, a spinout of OfferZen. specialises in creating developer experiences and opportunities for the SA developer community and helps businesses engage with the community in meaningful ways. The Hackathon is set to be a unique moment of connection between tech innovation and real-world application.

According to Chipo Mushwana; Executive, Emerging Innovation, Nedbank Retail, the Innovate Hackathon is an opportunity for the country’s talented developers to conceptualise, design and deliver cutting-edge AI solutions to help drive the ambitions of small businesses in South Africa. “We recognise the transformative potential of technology in addressing the unique challenges faced by small businesses,” Chipo explains, “and this Hackathon represents the tangible delivery of our commitment to foster an environment of creativity and practical solution development.”

The primary focus of the Hackathon is on creating innovative AI-powered financial tools to help propel South African SMEs to new heights. Participants will have the unique opportunity to access Nedbank’s banking APIs, including its leading PayShap API, to develop solutions that streamline the process of accessing financial services for small businesses and ensure a hassle-free experience when they open accounts or seek credit from the bank. The hope is that the participating developers will also produce some highly inventive financial management tools that can help SMEs effectively track their income, expenses, and profits, and provide them with faster and safer payment alternatives that prioritise transactional ease.

Aretha Cooper, Co-founder of, believes that by collaborating with Nedbank, can support developers to contribute to the growth of the South African economy. “The Innovate Hackathon provides a unique opportunity for the South African developer community to get access to the latest banking APIs and collectively build impactful SME solutions”

Contestants in the Hackathon will be expected to present a working proof-of-concept (POC) showcasing a feasible solution that utilises Nedbank APIs. While perfection and final development are obviously not the goal, the practicality and potential of the proposed solution will need to be evident for the concept to be considered by the judges.

In addition to the chance to win some great tech prizes and AVO vouchers, participants will gain exclusive insights into Nedbank’s world-leading banking technology, deepen their understanding of South Africa’s business landscape, and have the opportunity to harness the capabilities of GPT4 for innovative, real-world problem-solving.

For more information, or to register for free to participate in the Nedbank Hackathon, visit and be a part of Nedbank’s pioneering journey of leveraging tech innovation to benefit all South Africa’s SMEs.