Innovate Ventures has graduated its second cohort of 10 startups from Somaliland and Somalia graduate from their programme.
The 12-week accelerator programme saw over 400 applications received and doubled the seed investment from $15,000 last year to $30,000.
Four startups from the programme received $30,000 in investment from Innovate Ventures Fund. The significant increase in applications and seed investment, and further support and interest from the private and public sector has seen the reach and attention of the accelerator grow.
First place went to Bilan Baby, a startup that sells baby furniture, accessories and baby clothing as well as maternity products. Bilan Baby received $7,000 in seed investment. Second place went to SAMS, an agritech marketplace for farmers and buyers and Almijet, a digital printing company who received $5,000 each.
Finally, Brandkii, an online marketing and advertising startup, received $3,000. Further investment was provided to Muraadso, an e-commerce startup and last year’s winners; they received $10,000.
Warda Dirir, Co-Founder of Innovate Ventures, comments, ‘the success of this year’s accelerator programme is down to years of ground work in the region and lessons learned. We are committed to helping the region produce more technology driven businesses that resolve business challenges in the region and tap into untapped markets’. Given the growth of the programme, more applicants and larger investments are expected next year, giving the burgeoning Somali tech startup scene further support.