Key Developments

Africa's "Y Combinator", Accelerate Africa, Unveils First Cohort of 10 Startups

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Accelerate Africa, a new accelerator program designed to propel early-stage African businesses has unveiled its inaugural cohort after four months of operation.

The program, led by Iyin Aboyeji, founder of Pan-African VC firm Future Africa, and Mia von Koschitzky-Kimani, general partner, aspires to become the “Y Combinator of Africa.”

“We previously focused on pre-accelerator programs to prepare founders for established accelerators like Y Combinator and Techstars,” Aboyeji said. 
“However, we recognized the need for a program specifically tailored to the African landscape, prompting us to enter the accelerator arena ourselves.”

The first cohort boasts geographical diversity, with the ten startups hailing from Nigeria (6), Kenya (2), Egypt (1), and Eswatini (1).
These companies represent various sectors critical to Africa’s development, including artificial intelligence (AI), clean technology (cleantech), property technology (proptech), health technology (healthtech), automotive technology, human resources technology (HRTech), logistics, and financial technology (fintech).

Following a demo day at the Lagos Marriott Hotel, decisions regarding pre-seed or seed funding will be made for select startups.
Angel investors and venture capitalists will provide investments ranging from $250,000 to $500,000.  

Here’s a glimpse at the innovative startups comprising Accelerate Africa’s first cohort:

  1. Afriskaut (Nigeria): An AI and data startup harnessing proprietary technology to identify Africa’s top sports talent.
  2. Agrails (Kenya): A cleantech company leveraging AI to build data systems that empower organizations to address and capitalize on climate risks and opportunities across Africa.
  3. Campus HQ (Nigeria): A proptech startup simplifying workspace discovery, setup, and management for mid-to-large-sized teams, essentially creating an “Airbnb for workspaces.”
  4. CDIAL (Nigeria): An AI company developing a conversational AI fluent in African languages.
  5. Checkups (Kenya): A healthtech startup offering affordable and accessible healthcare to underserved communities through micropayment options.
  6. Flickwheel (Nigeria): An autotech startup providing on-demand auto repair credits, vetted technicians, and automated repair tracking for efficient vehicle care.
  7. Juiceme (Eswatini): An HRTech startup offering blue-collar workers access to their earned wages via WhatsApp before payday, particularly for emergencies.
  8. Messenger (Nigeria): A logistics startup empowering delivery drivers to become entrepreneurs through income and ownership opportunities, including vehicle financing to own their delivery vehicles.
  9. PipeOps (Nigeria): A DevOps provider offering a suite of tools and services to help companies with limited cloud expertise set up, deploy, and manage cloud-based applications.
  10. Settle (Egypt): A fintech startup automating B2B payments, enabling clients to streamline payments to all suppliers with ease.
Accelerate Africa’s mission is to empower these ventures and shape a thriving future for African businesses.

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