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A Google for Startups program giving access to funding to Black-founded startups in Africa.
Through the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund Africa, we are supporting early-stage Black-founded startups and startups that are benefitting the Black community on the continent. We want to bridge the existing fundraising gap for Black startup founders in Africa’s fast-growing technology landscape. This non-dilutive $3 million fund is allocated across a pipeline of 50 investable startups in Africa. The fund is open to all startups that meet the criteria, with priority given to Google for Startups Accelerator and Partner program alumni. This fund will be given along with mentorship support and Google platform credits to help the startups grow.
Who Should Apply
The Black Founders Fund is intended for startups with self-identifying Black leaders or companies directly supporting the Black community. We encourage established startups based in Africa who are seeking seed-stage funding to apply. Applications are open now through July 7, 2021.
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We’re currently accepting applicants from the following countries in Africa: Botswana, Cameroun, Cote D’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. Applications are open now through July 7, 2021.
Is this fund only for Google for Startups Accelerator alumni and participants?
No, this program is open to all startup founders who meet the criteria.
Who is eligible?
Here’s our eligibility criteria:
A startup that is:
Headquartered in Africa or has a legal presence on the continent
Building for Africa and a global market
Creating jobs, has growth potential to raise more funding, and making an impact
With a founding team that is:
Diverse, with at least one Black C-level founding member
Directly supporting the Black community
Technology startups with a live product in market or business where technology is core to their ability to scale (not for consultancies or not-for-profits)
Compatibility with Google products—our products can accelerate their growth
How much funding is offered to selected startups?
Each startup will receive either $50,000 or $100,000. Funding varies according to each startup’s product development stage, current needs, and how much they’ve already raised.
My product hasn’t launched yet. Can I still apply?
No, we’re looking for startups with released products. So if your company hasn’t launched a product quite yet, we ask that you wait to apply until you’ve reached this milestone.
My startup has already been funded. Can I still apply?
Yes, as long as your startup is seeking to raise seed-stage funding, we encourage you to apply.
Is there a single call for applications?
Yes, applications are open from June 21 to July 7, 2021. Apply now!
Since I applied to the program, my startup has significantly evolved. Can I reapply?
Yes, please resubmit your application with updated metrics and information that best show your company’s growth. Please note that once the application closes on July 7th, you will not be able to apply or make changes to your application.
Will I get feedback on my business if it’s not selected?
Unfortunately, we can’t provide feedback to startups that are not selected. We’ll only reach out to selected companies.
If my company is selected, will Google become an equity partner?
No, the Black Founders Fund is an equity-free investment. That means there is no shareholding or financial counterpart of any kind. Google won’t be part of your startup’s corporate structure or have any kind of financial return on the investment.