Safaricom intends to fund local tech startups to a tune of $5 million. This is part of their spirited effort to invest in startups that are firmly aligned with the telco giant’s vision. As Kenya’s biggest company in value, they also intend to invest in ventures of high potential throughout the country. The Spark Fund plans to support strategically aligned startups with a partnership or acquisition.
The fund will channel $500,000 into startups with a potential for rising higher depending on a case by case evaluation. The Spark Fund will invest in early growth stage or late seed ventures cutting across the sectors of education, agriculture, and healthcare.
Who is eligible to invest in the Spark Fund?
All participates must be Kenyan companies with commercially viable business models. Another criterion for making it to the fund is to have an active mobile-based product /service with an active user base. The ventures must be generating revenue and sign an agreement with Safaricom. Startups that meet the eligibility are either early or late seed tech-driven ventures.
Spark Fund urges innovators to protect their ideas and prototypes before submitting their ideas for scrutiny. Fund Manager S&B Ventures is responsible for the selection process. Safaricom’s Investment Committee alongside the Board of Trustees will then approve funding.