African Startups Can Benefit from President Macroon’s Digital Africa initiative Fund for African Startups

African Startups Can Benefit from President Macroon’s Digital Africa initiative Fund for African Startups

French President Emmanuel Macron has reaffirmed its position in the Digital Africa Initiative by pledging $150m as part of its commitment to support 500 African startups in line with the French Government’s Digital Africa Venture Capital Fund.

Digital Africa Venture Capital Fund was launched in 2018 by President Emmanuel Macron as part of the unveiling of a “Digital Africa” initiative – a platform to promote African entrepreneurs, through encouraging collaboration and knowledge sharing, providing an online database of resources, hosting events, and facilitating access to funding.

President Macron’s speaking at the New Africa-France Summit last week said the funding covers the next three years, while also stating that Digital Africa is now part of Proparco, the private sector subsidiary of the Agence Française de Développement (AFD).

At the event, it was also announced that the Fuzé project, which focuses on Francophone Africa and aims to support at least 200 tech startups by early 2022 via a new small ticket fund will provide, in stages, funds of between $12k to $230k in the form of repayable loans.

Digital Africa’s chief executive officer (CEO) Stéphan-Eloise Gras speaking on the funding said that the initiative provides an avenue to support future African unicorn startups.

“Digital Africa’s new organization, redefined with our partners, allows us to reinforce our commitment to “made in Africa” tech innovations and become a factory for future African unicorns. Startups need a one-stop-shop combining training, research, project-structuring, support to pro-tech and pro-innovation reforms, and financing.

“From now on, thanks to the merger with Proparco, they will find in Digital Africa a partner capable of offering them support from ideation and seed to growth and hypergrowth.

By putting tech at the service of transparency and efficiency in development aid, and by getting closer to the private sector, Digital Africa wants to make a long-lasting difference,” said Stéphan-Eloise.

The Digital Africa team is now preparing a roadshow that will take place at the end of this quarter and will stop in several African regions to strengthen connections with key partners and players, promote the programs, and invite African startups to apply.