Village Capital, in partnership with Norad, has announced the launch of Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa, a groundbreaking programme focused on building ecosystems to support climate-focused startups in select African countries. This collaborative effort aims to strengthen Entrepreneur Support Organisations (ESOs) and foster the growth of impactful ventures addressing critical environmental challenges.

Village Capital and Norad's Track Record

Village Capital has been active in Sub-Saharan Africa since 2012, spearheading numerous accelerator programmes and providing support to entrepreneurs across 15 countries in the region. Norad, the Norwegian development agency, is committed to advancing the UN's Sustainable Development Goals through strategic partnerships worldwide.

Programme Overview: A Dual-Track Approach

Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa will adopt a two-pronged strategy. Firstly, it will empower ESOs with the necessary tools and resources to enhance their capacity in nurturing sustainable entrepreneurship. Secondly, the programme will provide direct support to climate-focused startups in Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, and Tanzania, fostering innovation in critical areas such as the blue economy, climate adaptation, food security, and renewable energy.

Nurturing Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

ESOs serve as vital pillars of the entrepreneurial ecosystem, offering essential support to early-stage ventures. Rachel Crawford of Village Capital emphasizes their role in providing training, networks, and access to resources. However, many ESOs face challenges in accessing capital, hindering their ability to fully support startups. Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa aims to address these gaps by providing comprehensive support to both ESOs and startups.

Strengthening the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Per Fredrik Ilsaas Pharo, director of climate and environment at Norad, highlights the significance of supporting entrepreneurs in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. By strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem and addressing barriers to financing and technical support, the programme aims to catalyze innovation in key sectors such as the blue economy, renewable energy, and food security.

Call to Action: Information Session for ESOs

To engage with ESOs in the targeted countries, Village Capital will host an information session tailored to their needs. This session will provide in-depth insights into the programme and its eligibility criteria, offering an opportunity for interested parties to learn more and express their interest in participating.

Driving Sustainable Innovation in Africa

As Village Capital and Norad join forces, their collaborative efforts signal a commitment to driving sustainable innovation and fostering climate-focused entrepreneurship in Africa. Through Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa, they aim to empower ESOs, support impactful startups, and catalyze positive change in critical environmental sectors across the continent.