MEST, a pan-African entrepreneurial training program, seed fund, and incubator has launched two new Incubators in Lagos, Nigeria, and Cape Town, South Africa, as the program continues to expand its presence across the continent.
The spaces will join the flagship incubator headquartered in Accra, Ghana, as part of a growing Pan-African network of MEST Incubators. MEST also has a growing community at NEST Nairobi.
According to MEST Managing Director Aaron Fu, “We’re extremely excited to enter the Nigerian and South African markets with the launch of our new incubator spaces. Lagos and Cape Town are home to an enormous amount of ambitious tech talent with massive potential. We also look forward to welcoming companies from the larger local community to join our Pan-African network of like-minded entrepreneurs.” .
MEST Incubators in Lagos and Cape Town will offer entrepreneurs the same support, skilled staff, mentorship, network and resources enjoyed in Ghana, as well as a number of curated events in an effort to bring together the African tech community – catering to everyone from startup founders and teams, to investors and corporate executives.
MEST will have a 1-year technology training program in Ghana for African entrepreneurs, followed by potential seed funding and incubation for MEST portfolio companies in Pan-African incubator spaces. MEST Incubator space is also open to startups who did not graduate from the MEST training program.
The MEST Incubator Cape Town are in the former Cape Town Garage, located in Woodstock Exchange on Albert Road.
“As a South Africa-based VC, we’re thrilled about MEST’s South African expansion,” said Andrea Böhmert, Partner & Co-Founder, Knife Capital. “MEST has a unique offering that combines capacity-building with access to funding and a global network, in an effort to create globally successful entrepreneurs. Their presence will certainly add to the dynamic startup community in Cape Town and further fuel growth on the continent.”
MEST established an initial footprint in Nigeria in 2015 and South Africa in 2016, with the first class of Nigerian and South African Entrepreneurs-in-Training (EITs) accepted into the program. Today, MEST is truly Pan-African, with a presence in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa and Cote d’Ivoire.
Since its inception, the Meltwater Foundation has invested $20 million into its training program, the MEST incubator network, and early stage MEST tech startups.