Google announces $4m funds for startups in Africa, Europe
Google has announced applications for the third cohort of its Black Founders Fund (BFF) for startups in Africa and Euroupe.
This is contained in a statement by Mr Folarin Aiyegbusi, Head of Startup Ecosystem, Google, sub-Saharan Africa, on Tuesday in Lagos.
Aiyegbusi said that Google would earmark four million dollars to support eligible black-founded startups this year.
He noted that the programme was in line with its commitment to digital transformation and support to black-founded startups.
Aiyegbusi said that startups operating and headquartered in Africa or having a legal presence on the continent were eligible to apply for the BFF.
He said that startups that wish to apply should be benefiting the black community or early-stage startups with black founders or diverse founding teams.
Aiyegbusi said that startups should be building for Africa and the global market, have the growth potential to raise more funding and create jobs.
According to him, selected startups will receive between $150,000 and $200,000 equity-free cash awards and per startup in Google Cloud credits, support in the form of training and access to a network of mentors to assist in tackling the challenges unique to each startup.
“Startups are critical driver of innovation, economic growth and social progress especially in Africa and the support that the selected startups will receive will go a long way to unlock the potential and promote growth in the African tech ecosystem and the next generation of African tech entrepreneurs.
“We encourage all eligible startups to apply following the successful completion of two cohorts of the BFF, the programme has supported a total of 110 black-owned startups across Africa,” he said.
He said that 60 growth-stage startups were selected and supported through the programme last year in Africa.
Aiyegbusi said that Africa has a growing population with one in three Africans estimated to be under 35 years by 2050.
He said that the continent presents a huge opportunity for startups to provide innovative solutions for the growing market.
According to him, it is also estimated that by 2025, the African internet economy, will have the potential to add up to $180 billion to Africa’s Gross Domestic Product.
Aiyegbusi said that by funding the BFF, Google is promoting job creation and wealth generation in the continent.
He said that the BFF programme for startups not only provides funding, but also hands-on support, connections and resources to help founders build solutions that were relevant for the African economy.
Aiyegbusi said the applications for the third cohort would close on March 26, 2023 and applications for the 2023 BFF for startups would be found at https://goo.gle/ApplyforBFFAfrica.