Applications are now open for the Google Black Founders Fund for African startups

Google has announced that applications are now open for the third cohort of Google Black Founders Fund (BFF) for Africa.  For the third cohort, Google has committed an amount of US$4 million, with selected startups receiving equity-free cash awards of up to US$150,000, cloud credit of US$200,000, and access to training and networking with mentors.

The initiative was started as a response to the fact that Black founders in Africa disproportionately lacked access to the networks and capital needed to grow their businesses. In 2020, with less than 0.5% of global venture capital (VC) funding going to Black-led startups, Google announced the Black Founders Fund and has since deployed $20M in funding to founders across the US, Europe, Africa, and Brazil.

Startups operating and headquartered in Africa or having a legal presence on the continent are eligible to apply for the Black Founders Fund. One of the conditions is that the businesses should be benefiting the black community or have black founders or diverse founding teams. The startups should be building for Africa and the global market, have the growth potential to raise more funding, create jobs, and generally be making measurable impact.

Folarin Aiyegbusi, head of startup ecosystem at Google Sub-Saharan Africa., had this to say, “Startups are a critical driver of innovation, economic growth and social progress especially in Africa and the support that the selected startups will receive will go a long way to unlock the potential and promote growth in the African tech ecosystem and the next generation of African tech entrepreneurs. We encourage all eligible startups to apply.”

Applications are open here until March 26.