Nigeria alone – through to its population size – dominated with 23 out of the 60 African startups that received a total $4 million funding in the second cohort of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund for Africa (GSBFFA).
The tech giant made the disclosure at the announcement of GSBFFA 2022 winners in Abuja.
Nigerian techies grabbed the headline figures, followed by Kenya (12), Rwanda (six) South Africa (five), Uganda (four), among others
Each of selected startups will get support in the form of a six-month training programme that includes access to a network of mentors to help tackle unique challenges.
$200K Google Cloud credit
The 60 grantees will be a part of tailored workshops, support networks, and community building sessions, and will also get non-dilutive awards of $50,000 and $100,000 and up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credit.
“Africa is a diverse continent with massive opportunity but the continent is faced with the challenge of limited diversity in venture capital funding flow,” reiterated Folarin Ayegbusi, Google Head of Startup Ecosystem, Sub-Saharan Africa.
“We hope that the Black Founders Fund program will be able to bridge the gap of disproportionate funding between expat startups over local and black-led companies.”
National Information Technology Development Agency Director General Kashifu Inuwa said the Nigeria Startup Bill recently pass by the National Assembly will help institutionalise legal frameworks that will enhance startup growth in Nigeria.
Google had in May asked tech startups in Nigeria and 12 other African countries to apply for $4 million grant in the second cohort of GSBFFA.
Google said the success of its first cohort made it to increase the grant to $4 million to fund and support 10 more techies.
BFFA is open to startups that meet the eligibility criteria in Botswana, Cameroun, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.
These 13 countries are the prime focus, Google said, but added strong applications from other African countries would also be considered.
“The Black Founders Fund Africa demonstrates our commitment to supporting innovation in underserved areas,” Aiyegbusi explained at the time.
“Black-led tech startups face an unfair venture capital funding environment and that is why we are committed to helping them thrive, grow to be better and ensure the success of communities and economies in our region.
“The fund will provide cash awards and hands-on support to 60 Black-led startups in Africa, which we hope will aid in developing affordable solutions to fundamental challenges affecting those at the base of the socio-economic pyramid in Africa.”