Unlocking Opportunities for African SMEs

African startups are being offered a unique opportunity to propel their growth and access capital markets through Archipelagos, a pioneering international cooperation programme initiated by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), in collaboration with the European Commission. Aimed at supporting the development of African SMEs, Archipelagos seeks to provide tailored assistance to up to 1,000 startups across the continent.

Three Pillars of Support: Training, Mentoring, Networking

Archipelagos is built on a foundation of three key pillars: training, mentoring, and networking. This holistic approach is designed to equip SMEs with the skills, knowledge, and connections needed to thrive in today's competitive landscape. Through a hybrid model incorporating both asynchronous and synchronous elements, participants will benefit from a dynamic and interactive learning experience.

Comprehensive Learning Experience

The programme offers SMEs access to a diverse range of online courses via the Archipelagos digital platform. These courses are tailored to address the specific needs and development stages of participating startups. Additionally, interactive webinars complement the asynchronous learning materials, fostering engagement and facilitating knowledge exchange among participants.

Building Connections and Community

Beyond training, Archipelagos fosters a supportive community of SMEs and investors, facilitating valuable connections and collaborations. Participants will have the opportunity to engage with peers and industry experts, both locally and internationally, paving the way for potential partnerships and growth opportunities.

Facilitating Access to Capital Markets

At the culmination of the programme, SMEs demonstrating readiness for capital market financing will receive personalized support to navigate the fundraising process. With guidance and assistance, startups will explore innovative debt instruments and leverage the first-loss financial guarantee facility from the European Commission to attract additional investors and secure funding on favorable terms.

Application Details

Interested startups can apply for the Archipelagos programme here until June 30, with applications reviewed on an ongoing basis. This presents a unique opportunity for African entrepreneurs to accelerate their growth, expand their networks, and access the resources needed to scale their ventures.