500 Global, GIZ Partner To Empower African Accelerators



500 Global, a venture capital firm based in the United States, has teamed up with Germany’s economic development agency Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and its Make-IT in Africa initiative to launch its inaugural Bootcamp for Accelerator Managers (BAM) program, which aims to empower African accelerators in their efforts to support the continent’s talented entrepreneurs.

The BAM program aims to expand the reach of high-potential accelerators in Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Senegal, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Egypt, South Africa, and Kenya. It will employ a project-based teaching methodology with real-world scenarios based on 500 Global’s experience running more than 80 accelerator programs around the world, as well as Make-IT in Africa’s experience assisting national and pan-African entrepreneurial ecosystems in becoming resilient.

BAM will begin on November 14 in Nairobi, Kenya with a five-day in-person bootcamp for selected accelerator managers from across Africa, followed by a 12-month virtual programme focusing on best practices in running a world-class accelerator.

“500 Global is thrilled to be working alongside GIZ to ensure that African accelerators have the tools they need to support startups. 500 has been investing in companies in Africa for a decade and continues to be excited about the growth of the African tech ecosystem. We believe that the next phase of this evolution will be led by homegrown accelerators, like the ones joining BAM,” said Mareme Dieng, 500 Global’s Africa lead.

“This programme represents another cornerstone in Make-IT in Africa´s efforts to support African innovation on a local, pan-African and global scale. Together with our partner 500 Global, we use a hands-on approach to bring together African accelerators with seasoned coaches, while simultaneously building bridges between African and international networks. Beyond the scope of the programme, African entrepreneurs and startups can benefit from the best practices applied by accelerators across the continent,” said Matthias Rehfeld, head of Make-IT in Africa.

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