Microsoft is announcing plans to support African startups with $500 million in potential funding in partnership with venture capital investors to enable them to rapidly scale using investment funding. This is part of new initiatives under its Africa Transformation Office to accelerate the growth of 10,000 African startups over the next five years. Including the launch of Microsoft Startups Founders Hub in Africa and new partnerships with accelerators and incubators to provide startups with access to markets, technical skills, and funding.
Microsoft will establish industry alliances and partnerships with venture capital investors to facilitate access to the $500 million funding. Targeting those with global reach and regional bases with an interest in one or more regions within Africa. The funding will come from a network of venture capital investors, who will dedicate a portion of their financial support to startups in the Microsoft network.
The company has established partnerships with key venture capital investors, including Banque Misr, Global Venture Capital, and GetFundedAfrica. With plans to grow this network of venture capital investors in the next five years. This will allow it to increase funding to startups and enable them to scale up and drive economic growth.
“Our goal in establishing these partnerships with venture capital investors is to extend the network of potential partnerships between Microsoft, venture capital investors, and startups, thereby increasing the funding made available to eligible startups,” says Gerald Maithya, Startups Lead, Microsoft Africa Transformation Office.
Microsoft believes the African startup market is well-placed to become a cornerstone of the continent’s digital economy, supporting local innovation through relevant solutions to societal challenges.
“Our ambition is to see an explosion of local invention,” says Wael Elkabbany, Managing Director, Microsoft Africa Transformation Office. “That will contribute positively, not just to Africa’s digital economy, but to global society he concludes“.
Microsoft hopes to enable digital transformation powered by Africans for Africans with the establishment of the Africa Transformation Office. It will partner with public and private organizations to empower Africans and foster economic prosperity.