Facebook launches Bots for Messenger challenge; apply now

February 17, 2017
2 min read

Facebook has recently launched the Bots for Messenger challenge for developers across the Middle East and Africa.

The contest, birthed out of Facebook’s passion for promoting continuous innovation across Africa, aims to find new innovative platforms, and provide necessary tools needed for their growth. Recognition and rewards will be given to the most innovative new developed Messenger Bots in these categories:

  • Gaming and entertainment
  • Productivity and utility
  • Social good

Entries for participation are open to teams (of 3 people each), and submission period runs from February 15, 2017, to April 28, 2017.

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Contest Details

  • Launch date: February 15, 2017
  • Submission closes: April 28, 2017
  • The announcement of finalist teams: May 19, 2017

60 finalist teams will be announced per region; 30 teams each from the Middle East and North Africa, and the Sub-Saharan Africa. Submissions close for the 60 finalist teams by June 2, 2017.


From the 60 finalists teams, 12 winning teams per region will be announced on June 19, 2017

  • 3 winners and 3 runner-up teams in the Middle East and North Africa;
  • 3 winners and 3 runner-up teams in Sub-Saharan Africa



Finalist Teams

From each region -- Middle East and North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa -- 30 finalist teams will win Gear VRs, mobile phones, one hour of Facebook mentorship, and up to $40,000 in tools and services from FbStart, a Facebook program designed to help early stage mobile startups build and grow their bots.

Note: All student teams or individual student entrants who make it to the finals will win an additional $2,000 (due verification will be carried out to this effect).

Runner Up Teams

For each region, 3 runner-up teams (1 from each category) will win $10,000 and 3 months of Facebook mentorship (an hour per month).

Winning Teams

3 winning teams (1 from each category) will win $20,000 and 3 months of Facebook mentorship (an hour per month).

Judging Criteria

Using the Approximate Retail Value (ARV), the assessment will be based on the technical quality (35%), non-technical quality (35%), and user experience (30%) of bots created.

  • ARV of each Finalist prize is $40,700;
  • ARV of each Student Entrant prize: $2000;
  • ARV of each Runner Up Prize: $10,300;
  • and ARV of the Grand Prize: $20,300.

Note: Bots must be created, and will be verified, between February 15, 2017, o April 28, 2017. **Bots created before February 15, 2017, will not be eligible to participate. Read more rules and regulations thoroughly, to avoid disqualification.

To follow up the trends, you can join the Facebook Group, study these platforms; Facebook for Developers Messenger Platform and Building on the Messenger Platform, then submit your developed Bot.

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