Pangea Trust has opened applications for its Startup Connect Programme. The programme was launched yesterday at an online event moderated by security engineer Dr. Bright Gameli.
The project seeks to increase the deployment of diaspora remittances and networks to provide investment capital to MSMEs and startups in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia.
Launched in 2019, Pangea Trust was initiated by Pangea Accelerator as they identified a big need for a non-profit organization that could focus on building the innovation ecosystem and mobilizing resources from the African Diaspora. The independent organisation collaborates with organizations such as UN-Habitat, GIZ, UK commission, Strathmore and many more to offer proven and tested accelerator and investor programs to development organizations, NGOs, Corporates and foundations.
The Pangea Connect Investment Program aims to support startups on their entrepreneurship journey by funding their projects. All this the firm says will be geared towards advancing a sustainable economy ecosystem in Kenya as a vehicle for economic development and growth through the creation of jobs and reduction of poverty.
The programme is looking for high-growth African startups looking for capital to scale. Startups at the scale stage of their growth are also eligible to apply.
Selected startups will receive investment of between $20,000 and $150,000 as well as access to a diaspora network of mentors and experts.
This comes at a time when African startups continue to raise massive funding. In fact, a recent report by AfricArena has revealed that venture capital funding for African startups will reach a record of $2.25 billion and $2.8 billion this year. While 2020 undersized its growth, due to the pandemic, the report noted that VC investment is expected to climb sharply and exceed $10 billion by 2025.
Nigeria and Kenya are the hotspots for African VC investment, with $307 million and $305 million raised in 2020. In the first half of 2021, Africa startups raised a whopping $1.19 billion in funding, with deals worth $1 million and above accounting for about 95% ($1.14 bn) of the total funding raised. This is according to another report released by Maxime Bayen, a Senior Venture Builder for Catalyst Fund at BFA Global.
The new Pangea Startup Connect Programme unveiled on Thursday is open to startups from across the region. Interested startups can submit their application here.