“If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything”, great advice but the minimum investment of $200,000 for startups at 88mph, the Kenyan accelerator program, will also go a long way to achieving a few business aspirations.
By September 15th, 88mph hopes to invest those dollars in 8-15 startups. The seed investment fund is betting on mobile web markets in Africa and the doors opened today for people with good ideas to apply.
Last year the accelerator invested $180,000 in 7 Kenyan startups. It will now run an intense 3 month program to work with businesses that can scale across English-speaking Africa. That’s a population size larger than the United States with around half under 25 years old, so it’s also an area ripe for new businesses to flourish.
The program is open to local and international tech entrepreneurs and Kresten Buch, founder of 88mph feels that the growing middle classes of Africa will be a hungry market for the right business proposition, “Looking 2-5 years ahead, the US and Europe will be stagnating at best. I think the biggest opportunities for return on investment will be in Africa and other emerging markets,” he says.
88mph offers office space, an established local network, market knowledge and “a one way plane ticket”, Kresten jokes.
For those who fancy their chances in Africa, here are the details:
Up to $24k will be available per startup, that investment level will take a 6 -18% equity stake in the business. The deadline for applications is August 15 and teams will be notified if they have been accepted by September 5th.
The program starts in the 88mph Garage in Nairobi and includes access to mentors like Johanna Kollar, from Startup Support Africa at Google, Larry Madowo, Anchor at CNBC Africa, and Ranjith Cherickel, Head of Services Sales, Nokia Siemens Africa.
For those companies not originally based in Nairobi, there is also access to the accelerator’s base in Cape Town as well as partner tech hubs across Africa.
All that remains to explain is why this accelerator is called 88mph. Well, it’s not a bad choice if you remember, “If my calculations are correct, when this baby hits 88 miles per hour… you’re gonna see some serious shit.”
To find out more about the program and how to apply, check out the website here: 88mph
Image Credit: Gribiche