Google has unveiled the “Google for Startups Accelerator: AI First” accelerator program aimed at supporting African startups to use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to solve local challenges. According to Google, the program recognizes the transformative role AI is playing across different industries. The 10-week equity-free program is open to startups up to series A stage based in Africa or building Africa-centered solutions with AI and machine learning.
Participants will benefit from access to Google’s AI expertise, technical resources including up to $350k Google Cloud Credits, mentorship from seasoned AI professionals, and networking opportunities with fellow African startups and potential investors.
Speaking about the initiative, Folarin Aiyegbusi, Head of Startup Ecosystem, Africa, remarked, “Africa’s tech landscape is vibrant and ever-evolving. It’s inspiring to see African startups not only harnessing AI to address our unique challenges but also setting benchmarks for the world. AI First’ is more than a program; it’s a testament to our belief in the vision of these startups, ensuring they have the support and guidance they need to realise their full potential.”
According to a statement released today, the accelerator program draws learnings from past initiatives such as the Google for Startups Accelerator: Africa, The Google for Startups Black Founders Fund, and The Google for Startups Accelerator: Women Founders, the primary aspiration remains consistent: to support and highlight African-driven solutions.
Since inception in 2018, the Google for Startups Accelerator: Africa program has supported 106 startups from 17 African countries. According to Google, collectively, these startups have raised over $263 million in funding and created over 2,800 direct job opportunities in the region.
The application deadline for the Google for Startups Accelerator: AI First program is September 6, 2023. To apply visit here.