The call for applications for the September Cohort, VC4Africa’s coached fundraising opportunity, closes this Sunday, September 1st. Below we present the Selection Committee and share some last tips for those who want to apply!
Before you apply to raise capital through VC4Africa’s September Cohort, please carefully read the criteria for participation and steps of the application process. As mentioned, ventures that apply to be a part of VC4Africa’s September Cohort must have a solid business plan, clear market strategy, a working pilot, a chamber of commerce registration and complete documentation.
The Selection Committee will screen ventures who have applied to be part of the September Cohort based on uploaded documents. Please see the VC4Africa Quick Scan document to ensure your plan is solid, concise and complete. The more complete your application is, the better your chances are. Here’s the September Cohort’s Selection Committee:
Victor Asemota of Afrinnova
Victor Asemota is CEO/Principal Consultant at Swifta Systems in Accra, Ghana. He is also the founder of startup accelerator Afrinnova, based in Accra. One of the main objectives of Afrinnova is to create more innovative entrepreneurial ventures through proper guidance and mentorship, in collaboration with the best entrepreneurial minds in the world.
Lot Carlier of African Media Ventures Fund
Next to managing partner at Africa Media Ventures Fund, Lot Carlier is currently active as Strategy Director at Online Marketing Group, and board member of Voices of Africa Media Foundation and WomenWin foundation. During her years as a business consultant to the Board of VNU, a large Dutch publishing company, she was involved in many acquisition and divestitures.
Ory Okolloh of the Omidyar Network
Ory Okolloh is Director of Investments for Omidyar Network’s Government Transparency initiative in Africa. She is based in Johannesburg. Prior to joining Omidyar Network, Ory was Google’s policy manager for sub-Saharan Africa and was founding member and executive director of Ushahidi. Ory is also a member of the World Bank’s Council of Eminent Persons and active for other organizations.
Sean Smith of Invested Development
Sean Smith is the Program Manager at Invested Development (ID). He has extensive experience working with startup competitions & accelerators. Sean is running ID’s incubator with Safaricom, Kenya’s largest telephone communication company. He works closely with incubators, technology accelerators, universities, investors, and other partners to catalyze the innovation ecosystem in East Africa.
Samuel Ssenyimba of LGT Venture Philanthropy
Samuel works as a point person for LGT Venture Philanthropy Fund, and helps source potential investees / investments, carry out deal analysis & due diligence, deal-structuring, post-investment portfolio monitoring. He also has a keen interest in the social entrepreneurship space and is always on the look-out for entrepreneurs with innovative and unique ideas that target socio-economic challenges.
How to apply?
Step 1: Submit documents – To apply for VC4Africa’s September 2013 Cohort your venture has to be registered on the VC4Africa platform. After you’re signed up on VC4Africa and have created a venture profile, make sure to upload your business plan, chamber of commerce registration and other relevant documentation to your venture profile (see the 5 steps to fundraising on VC4Africaand the VC4Africa Quick Scan). Only investors registered as part of the VC4Africa Investor Network can access the documents you upload.
Step 2: Fundraising request – To complete your application, register an intention to raise a round of funding. You’ll find a “Fundraising” box on the right side in your venture profile. In this box, click “Get started” and indicate your financing stage and capital needs (between USD $10,000 and USD $1 million) to apply.
These are elements that make your application stronger:
Show to which extent is the team capable to make this company a success? It is key to have the right persons involved. We would like to see the different disciplines (including marketing, finance) on the pay roll. What (industry) experts are involved in the advisory board? The team is 30-50% of the value of a startup.
Show to which extend the company will be profitable in the coming 5 years?
Show to which extent the venture have an impact on local development in the coming 5 years (knowledge transfer, job creation, value chain optimization, etcetera)? We support social ventures and we also have a strong impact investor base.
Show to which extend the USP of the company is defendable? Preferably 5-7 years. Investors want to earn their money back, if anyone can copy and enter the market, the chances to earn your investment back reduce dramatically.
Show to which extent the company has been able to secure finance (family, friends, own investment, angels, etc). Companies that already secured some finance are more likely to get funded. If you cannot convince friends and family to invest, it might be hard to convince an angel. Skin in the game (own cash invested) also increases chances to the ability to involve external investors.
Show in how far the team has worked to understand the market in which they operate, the quality of the market research and the tangible traction gained through implementation? This has considerable implications on the forecasted cost structure of the organization and positioning/pricing of the revenue models.
Do you have last questions? This Friday, August 30, VC4Africa organizes a special “Free Feedback Friday” focused on the September Cohort applications. Call us between 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM CET on +31 20 531 3859 for short sessions of 10 minutes max to discuss your potential for fundraising and other September Cohort related questions with Saskia Reus-Makkink, VC4Africa’s Head of Investor Relations.