Microsoft 4Afrika is set to give a grant to seven new African startups in a move to help the startups scale cross borders and influence the next generation of developers and entrepreneurs in Africa.
Apart from the financial backing, Microsoft will also provide technical support and one-on-one mentorship to help these startups develop their businesses.
Set to be announced on September 30 in Nairobi, the startups will be part of Microsoft 4Afrika Advisory Council meeting which brings together a selection of Africa’s top leaders from various industries to discuss issues such as youth unemployment, innovation and entrepreneurship. This will be the second round of innovation grants awarded after five startups were selected in February this year.
The 4Afrika Initiative focuses on three critical areas of development for the continent – World-class skills, Access and Innovation.
Each of these focuses on different aspects that will help empower African youth, entrepreneurs, developers and business and civic leaders to turn great ideas into a reality that can help their community, their country, the continent, and beyond.
In October 2013
, Microsoft unveiled the Advisory Council for the 4Afrika initiative tasked with guiding strategic investments undertaken by the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative across the continent as well as ensuring 4Afrika is closely aligned to broad African development goals.
The startups in the first round of Microsoft 4Africa held in February 2014 included Africa 118
, a mobile directory that allows one to call the hotline to request a business’s location via text. n Uganda, access.mobile LLC
a healthcare and agricultural training and support startup that helps businesses integrate technology and expand their reach via mobile devices, Kyatbu
, a textbook subscription service for low-cost tablets, Save & Buy,
a mobile and web app that helps users create a savings plan for specific products and Gamsole,
a Windows mobile game production startup based in Nigeria.