A South African startup swiftVEE was selected to take part in the Launchpad Accelerator Africa Google initiative. The startup company provides a platform for connection between sellers and network of potential buyers and livestock agencies. The first Launchpad Accelerator Africa class was announced on 9th November last year by Google and closed on tenth December 2017. Launchpad Accelerator Africa generally is an early-stage African entrepreneurship programme based in Lagos Nigeria. The partnership brings together Andela, Udacity, and the Launchpad Accelerator Africa. The main aim of the partnership was to provide series of scholarship in Africa. Scholarship opportunities entail 15 000 single course scholarships and about 500 nanodegree scholarships to upcoming developers in South Africa and Kenya. In the next three years period, the programme will disburse more than $3-million in equity-free support in the continent. Other supports include access to expert advisers from Google, Silicon Valley, and working space.
According to the country director of Google Nigeria, Juliet Ehimuan, the initiative was announced in July 2017 at Google for Nigeria. The Digital Skills for Africa program was also announced at the same time. It helps in training over 10 million Africans comprising of nearly 100,000 upcoming developers for 5 years. The key conditions for selection are Sub-Saharan Africa Based, ability to secure seed funding, a technology startup, and target African market. The Launchpad Accelerator Africa class event participants list includes Babymigo, Kudi, Flexpay, OMG Digital, Piggybank, OkadaBooks, Pezesha. Other participants are Riby, TangoTv, Thrive Agric and Teheca.
Google is currently committed in Sub-Saharan Africa where it has hosted 13 Launchpad Build and Start events in Africa countries. Other Google supports include sponsoring 228 startup speakers and mentoring of 590 entrepreneurs in Kenya, South Africa, and Nigeria. Additionally, the initiative runs Google Developer Groups and Women Techmakers and developers training and support programmes. It also provides a platform where communities participate in Study Jams or developers group study activities. So far, there are nearly 140 communities spread across 25 countries within Sub-Saharan Africa. Fortunately, about 61 groups have managed to host 81 Study Jams all over ten countries. The effort has pushed the number of developers to hit five thousand in 2017.