1. MESTThe Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) and the MEST Incubator provide training, investment and mentoring for aspiring Ghanaian software entrepreneurs with the goal of creating globally successful companies that create wealth and jobs locally in Africa.” An arm of the non-profit Meltwater Foundation, MEST runs a two year training program in which budding entrepreneurs learn from experienced executives, MBA students and fellow entrepreneurs about how to monetize their innovative concepts. The incubator provides seed capital, guidance and support to graduates of the training program. MEST is one route to tap into the community of African tech entrepreneurs. http://www.meltwater.org/

2. VC4Africa Venture Capital for Africa is a matchmaking platform that brings together investors and African Entrepreneurs. VC4Africa also assists entrepreneur in finding mentors and other resources. VC4Africa members host occasional meetups and networking events worldwide. The last one in Boston was about 2 years ago. https://vc4africa.biz/


3. iHub Nairobi

Nairobi’s Innovation Hub for the technology community is an open space for the technologists, investors, tech companies and hackers in the area. This space is a tech community facility with a focus on young entrepreneurs, web and mobile phone programmers, designers and researchers.

iHub sees as its purpose the building of an ecosystem to support the growth of Kenyan technology entrepreneurs. It boasts over 12,600 individuals and 152 companies among its membership.


4. African Venture Capital Association The AVCA is a member supported organization with a mission to promote private equity and venture capital in Africa. Members include institutional investors, private equity and venture capital fund managers from 62 countries. Their activities support investments of all sizes and all stages of business growth. AVCA’s research and events provide a way for US investors to learn more about the startup ecosystem and the broader African private sector lanscape. http://www.avca-africa.org/  

5. Angel Fair More an event than a organization, Angel Fair is the brainchild of Ghanaian entrepreneur Eric Osiakwan, Scottish entrepreneur Jamie Clyde, and Artlogic, an events company that produces high end boutique fairs supporting the arts in Southern Africa. The first Angel Fair took place this past September in Johannesburg. It is part of a longer conversation that included a gathering a the Bergman Center at Harvard Law School, where investors, entrepreneurs and academics discussed how to make angel investing work in Africa. http://www.angelfair.net/

English: Diagram of private equity fund struct...

English: Diagram of private equity fund structure for Private equity, Private equity fund, Private equity firm (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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  1. John Snow says:

    It is slightly disappointing that none of these are actually “home grown” indigenous African success stories. Africans must stop looking to the West as its “saviour”, and learn to grow its own “home grown solutions”. Africa must learn not to repeat the mistakes of the past.

    • advansa says:

      I would call iHub and AVCA homegrown although they have welcomed outside resources and AVCA is Africans abroad and on the continent. There are at least two homegrown angel/venture networks I am aware of–Africa Angels Network in South Africa, and Nairobi Capital in Kenya. They are in very early stages but have the potential to grow into success stories.

  2. Bill Thompson says:

    Darnley, a nice piece of research. You might consider putting together a compilation of your recent research that we could include in our January VCIA Forum participants’ package. Perhaps this could generate some positive exposure. Bill

  3. advansa says:

    An article just came across my desk in Ventureburn that lists more venture investors startup hubs and other resources for African startups. See the link below:


  4. […] sector is also developing in Africa with hubs in Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana. We discussed the growing African startup ecosystem in an earlier post. Many of the companies are of a type that can scale across borders and would be […]

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