The 2017 Barclays Accelerator is in full swing at the Rise fintech innovation hub in Woodstock, Cape Town, with ten fintech companies on site, participating in a tried and tested start-up accelerator programme presented by Barclays Africa in conjunction with US-company Techstars.
The 13-week programme sees startup fintech companies follow a growth acceleration curriculum designed by Techstars, which has supported more than 900 technology startups across 23 cities around the world. The experience is enhanced through the involvement of a network of local and global mentors, as well as Barclays Africa executives, who help shape participants’ business plans and development.
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The experience is enhanced through the involvement of a network of local and global mentors, as well as Barclays Africa executives, who help shape participants’ business plans and development.
The intensive programme requires substantial support and this would not be possible without enthusiastic associates who help drive the process, alongside Yossi Hasson MD, of Techstars Africa. These associates assist with a variety of tasks throughout the full duration of the programme and no task is too big or too small for them.
In addition to supporting the day-to-day running of the programme, they ensure that participants’ every need is met. Their daily tasks can cover a wide variety of disciplines, including marketing, business development work, research, content generation, pitching preparation and more!
The 2017 Barclays Accelerator programme is supported by an impressive team with technology and developer support provided by Tim Lind, whose skills in system thinking and solution design are at the core of his start-up studio ‘Incremental Code’.
He is supported by Lebo Miya, who has a long track record of assisting in the development of the youth coding community in Cape Town. Brendan Meyer, Lauren Davies and Minnouw Coetzee pool their creative skills to help propel programme participants’ skills in branding, social media and marketing capabilities.
Additionally, Cerina Buizdenhout and Juan Romera are leveraging their global corporate experience to help shape participants’ commercial offering into viable, scalable companies across the region. Furthermore, Mark Berman is back from Seattle where he has coached top CEOs and executive teams, with his strategic contributions generated millions of dollars in revenue.
So why have these individuals taken three months out of their day jobs to be part of the Accelerator programme? Regular Rise members Lebo Miya and Tim Lind speak about the amazing opportunities available by simply being in the space.
Lind says: “The Rise community and its willingness to support opportunities has been a perfect example of how powerful a community can be when it is well curated and incentivised.”
For some of the team new to the Cape Town ecosystem, it is an effective new way to build networks locally and tap into Techstars’s global community.
Berman comments: “Working for Techstars seemed like a no-brainer opportunity to be able to network with folks involved in the local start-up community, experience first-hand what the local start-up talent is like, and experience how a world-class Accelerator runs.”
The experience is likely to push not only the programme participants out of their comfort zone but the associates too. The sense of satisfaction that associates are likely to feel at the end of the programme will no doubt be rewarding.
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