The Women Entrepreneurship for Africa (WE4A) programme has selected 100 female-led startups to join its high-impact accelerator, which is focused on startup growth for employment creation.
The WE4A project aims to improve business capacity, access to capital, market possibilities, knowledge improvement, and technical training for female-led enterprises.
It is an initiative of the European Union (EU), the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), with implementation from the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).
The Swiss Association for Entrepreneurship in Emerging Markets (SAFEEM), a Seedstars Group member, is in charge of the WE4A acceleration and program components. Participants will get a grant of EUR10,000 (US$11,400) and three months of technical help through a virtual acceleration program.
Benefits for Swiss Association for Entrepreneurship in Emerging Markets’s Women Entrepreneurship for Africa Participants
Over 30 seminars, expert lectures, and networking events will be available to the 100 entrepreneurs (the entire list may be seen here). In addition, startups will be paired with a specialized mentor for one-on-one sessions, as well as EiR assistance in small groups.
- Access to investment readiness training presented by topic experts
- Personalized support by an entrepreneur in a residence that will provide hands-on support in the growth of each startup
- 1on1 Mentorship
- Local ecosystem integration & network connections
- Demo Day with international investors
- Grant funding of €10.000 and up to €50.000 for the 15 selected high-growth startups
After completing the accelerator, the startups will present their ideas to worldwide investors at a virtual demo day. Following that, the 15 entrepreneurs with the highest growth potential will get follow-on funding of up to EUR50,000 (US$57,000) as well as an additional three months of growth program training.
WE4A is estimated to contribute to the creation of approximately 1,800 new jobs in Sub-Saharan Africa among women entrepreneurs.
“The European Union is proud to support the Women Entrepreneurship for Africa programme. Empowering women and youth unlocks immense creativity and potential to drive growth. It reduces inequality and creates decent jobs across our neighbouring continent.
The EU is committed to supporting small businesses, especially those led by women and young people, which are the backbone of Africa’s economy and long-term growth,” said European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen.