Google to invest $50 million in Africa’s early and growth-stage startups through the Africa Investment Fund while ramping the efforts of supporting more of the continent’s businesses. Google disclosed these plans today in a virtual event where CEO Sundar Pichai announced the company’s intentions to commit $1 billion over the next five years.
Google has a Google for Startups Accelerator Africa program and a Black Founders Fund. The program has supported over 80 startups in the seed and Series A stages. Startups get equity-free mentorship and resources.
The Black Founders Fund offers non-dilutive cash awards to all black-led startups spread across three regions. In the United States, the Black Founders Fund runs a $5 million fund, in Africa a $3 million, and a $2 million fund in Europe. Thus far, over 50 started have been selected to take part in the Africa program starting on October 13. Participants will receive up to $100,000 in equity-free capital alongside credits from Google Cloud, Google.org ads grants, etc. Among the 50 startups, 40% are women-led across 9 countries stretching 12 economic sectors.
The new $50 million Africa Investment Fund will help Google derive equity from high-growth African startups in exchange for varied cheque sizes. The bulk of the continents’ investments fixated on the big four countries Kenya, Egypt, South Africa, and Nigeria. The program has also paid attention to under-funded and overlooked countries such as Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Cameroon, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Senegal, Morocco, Tunisia, and Tanzania.
Startup investment will power Africa's digital economy. Through our new Africa Investment Fund, we'll invest $50 million in African startups, and help them create useful tools for their communities#google4africa pic.twitter.com/48xiwuRil2
— Google in Africa (@googleafrica) October 6, 2021