Google’s Black Founders Fund:  25 African Start-ups Selected

Black Founders Fund Google 2023

25 African based start-ups have been selected for the third cohort of the Black Founders Fund. Google for Start-ups announced that 40 start-ups were selected in total for the $4 million fund.  The list of start-ups displays diversity and variety. Of the start-ups, 72% are led or co-founded by women.

This is a clear sigh that women are actively playing a crucial role in the tech start up ecosystem.

Google for Start-ups Black Founders Fund was announced as part of a series of racial equity commitments to close the funding gap and empower Black entrepreneurs in the US, Brazil and Europe. Given the proven success of the Black Founders Fund around the world, Google is launched the program with the first $3M Black Founders Fund in Africa.

The funding will provide the businesses with the capital needed to expand and grow their start-ups. Moreover, it comes at a time when start-up funding in the continent is low. According to the latest data, African tech start-ups raised 57.2% less capital in Q1 2023 than in the same period last year.

Hence, the 25 companies selected will now be in a better place to expand markets and create more employment opportunities. Each selected start-up will receive up to $150,000 in non-dilutive cash awards, up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credits, Ad support. Additionally, they will get 1:1 mentoring by industry experts and invaluable connections within Google’s network.

Folarin Aiyegbusi, Head of Start-ups Ecosystem, Africa at Google said;” Start-ups play a major role in advancing Africa’s digital transformation. We look forward to working with this group of innovative founders who are using technology to solve some of the most pressing challenges in Africa. The Google for Start-ups Black Founders Fund is committed to addressing the stark inequality in VC funding by providing Black founders with the resources and support they need to succeed

This year’s African Cohort for the Black Founders Fund

● Akoma Health (Nigeria): Tech platform for accessible, culturally conscious mental health services in Africa.

● BezoMoney (Ghana) : Digital banking for Africa’s underbanked via mobile/web platforms.

● Chargel (Senegal): Digital trucking platform connecting shippers/carriers in Francophone West Africa.

● Charis UAS (Rwanda): Provides 3D geospatial data via drone technology.

● Evolve Credit (Nigeria): SaaS for digitising and managing banking services.

● Excel At Uni (South Africa): Supports student funders via digital services.

● EzyAgric (Uganda): AI-powered mobile technology to enhance Africa’s farming sector.

● Fez Delivery (Nigeria): Last-mile logistics platform for various industries.

● Fleetsimplify (Kenya): Monetization platform connecting gig drivers & vehicle owners.

● HealthDart (South Africa): Digital HMO providing end-to-end health services with insurance.

● Herconomy (Nigeria): Female-focused fintech aiming to be Africa’s first women’s bank.

● Jumba (Kenya): Improving Kenya’s construction sector supply chain via B2B platform.

● MDaaS Global (Nigeria): Tech-powered diagnostic centres for affordable healthcare.

● My Pocket Counsel (Nigeria): Legal tech platform for contract generation and management.

● Orda (Nigeria): Pan-African neobank for restaurants, offering cloud-based software.

● Periculum (Nigeria): Data company aiding in credit assessment, fraud/churn risk.

● Raenest (Nigeria): Fintech offering global financial services to freelancers/startups in Africa.

● Ridelink (Uganda): E-logistics platform providing shipping and real-time tracking.

● Susu (Côte D’Ivoire): Health platform providing healthcare services/insurance funded by African diaspora.

● Talamus Health (Ghana): Tech solutions targeting healthcare inefficiencies in Africa.

● TruQ (Nigeria): Streamlining mid-mile logistics across Africa with third-party vehicle connectivity.

● Tushop (Kenya): Tech platform for group buying of daily essentials in Kenya.

● Uzapoint (Kenya): Mobile/web POS for digitising bookkeeping in Africa’s informal sector.

● Zinacare (South Africa): Online platform for accessible, affordable healthcare services.

● Zydii (Kenya): Localised digital training solutions for African SMEs.

Since its inception, the Black Founders Fund has facilitated over $205 million in investor conversations, representing a 12-fold increase. This has sparked significant growth within the participating startups, with their combined monthly recurring revenue now exceeding $6.1 million, marking a 7% increase.

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