Google LaunchPad Accelerator that selected 12 startups to form its first class has handed out USD 10 K to each startup in the form of a cash grant while graduating last week. Majority of the startups that were selected for the first class are from Nigeria. Google has been running the LaunchPad accelerator programme in many upcoming economies including Sau Paulo and Tel-Aviv. In Africa, the accelerator operates out of Lagos. Earlier, Google had announced USD 6 Mn in a grant through its philanthropic arm.
The startups that graduated from the first class include:
Babymigo [Nigeria]: It a community for expecting mothers and baby care
Flexpay [Kenya]: This startup has developed an automated system to keep a check on finances for business owners
Kudi [Nigeria]: It is a chatbot that enables payments via messaging
OkadaBooks [Nigeria]: It is an online publishing platform for storytellers and writers
OMG Digital [Ghana]: A media platform targeted at entertaining African millennials
Pezesha [Kenya]: This is a P2P lending platform connecting lenders to small ticket size borrowers
Riby [Nigeria]: A co-operative banking platform that allows users to borrow, lend and invest collectively
swiftVEE [South Africa]: A platform that connects livestock agencies to a network of buyers and sellers
TangoTv [Tanzania]: It’s an OTT platform that allows users to stream African movies and shows
Teheca [Uganda]: This healthtech startup provides postnatal healthcare at home for users
Thrive Agric [Nigeria]: An agritech startup that provides funding for smallholding farmers through crowdsourcing
As part of the program, each startup has access to equity free funding, mentorship from experts from the Silicon Valley, space to operate and media & PR. The program will run for the next three years and is aimed to accelerate 60 startups with USD 3 Mn in equity-free funding.
It has now opened the application for its second class of startups. Launchpad Accelerator Africa accepts applications from startups located in Algeria, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, and Zimbabwe