Facebook has picked 60 finalists from over 1000 entries it received from across the Middle East and Africa for the Bots for Messenger Developer Challenge. The challenge is a contest to recognise and reward developers who create the most innovative new bots on Messenger.
Developers, in teams of up to three people, were invited to create bots in three categories: gaming and entertainment; productivity and utility; and social good.
The 60 finalist teams (10 per category in Middle East/North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa) each won a Gear VR and mobile phone, one hour of Facebook mentorship, and tools and services from , a Facebook program designed to help early stage mobile start-ups build and grow their bots. All student teams who made it to the finals won an additional $2,000.
Nigerian finalists who made the list include Laide Bot (student submission), Headwork, Hyper-CV, and Baba Politricks.
Facebook will contact the finalists and connect them with a mentor. They will need to resubmit their bots before midnight (GMT) on June 2 to qualify to win. For each region, three runner-up teams (one from each category) will win $10,000 and three months of Facebook mentorship. For each region, three winning teams (one from each category) will win $20,000 and three months of Facebook mentorship.
See the Nigerian finalist teams and their bots below: