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25 African startups receive $4M from Google

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Tech giant Google has selected 25 Africa-based startups for the third cohort of Google for Startups Black Founders Fund (BFF) for Africa.

The 25 startup beneficiaries will have the opportunity to have a share of the $4 million in funding from the BFF.

Each selected startup will receive up to $150,000 in non-dilutive cash awards, up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credits, ad support, one-on-one mentoring by industry experts and connections within Google's network.

"Startups 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," said Google Africa Startup Ecosystem Head Folarin Aiyegbusi.

"The Google for Startups 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," Aiyegbusi continued.

The selection is also in line with the tech giant's pledge to invest over $1 billion for Africa's digital transformation.

BFF tackles racial inequality

The BFF, now in its third year, aims to help tackle systemic racial inequality in venture capital (VC) funding by providing equity-free grants and mentoring to early-stage, Black-led, high-growth businesses across Europe and Africa.

These 25 African startups founded across the continent are among the 40 startups chosen from Europe and Africa for the cohort.

Nigeria has the most grantees with ten; Kenya has five; and South Africa has three, completing the top three. Ghana and Uganda have two, and Côte d'Ivoire, Rwanda and Senegal all have one grantee rounding up the list.

Some selected include: Akoma Health, Chargel, Jumba, Susu, EzyAgric, Excel At Uni, Herconomy, Zinacare and Tushop.

Twenty five African startups are among 40 startups chosen from Europe and Africa for the third cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund.   (Source: Image by prostooleh on Freepik)
Twenty five African startups are among 40 startups chosen from Europe and Africa for the third cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund.
(Source: Image by prostooleh on Freepik)

"At Tushop, our passion lies in leveraging technology to empower Kenyan consumers and increase their buying power. Our ultimate ambition is to transform the way daily essentials and FMCG products are accessed, enabling individuals to save significantly," said Tushop Founder Cathy Chepkemboi.

"With the funding and support provided by the program, we will expedite the development of our innovative solutions, enhance support for our valued customers, and expand our presence on an international scale," added Herconomy Founder Ifedayo Durosinmi-Etti.

Google added that the selected startups embody the diverse entrepreneurial spirit across the African continent. Furthermore, it added that startups led or co-founded by women make up 72% of the group, highlighting the role women play in shaping Africa's startup ecosystem.

Since its inception, the BFF 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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*Top image is of representatives from 25 African startups that were selected by the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund. (Source: Google)

— Matshepo Sehloho, Associate Editor, Connecting Africa

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