Tech leaders join new Allied For Startups Advisory Board

A top team of expert advisors has been launched in order to navigate the unprecedented crisis that startups are now facing.

As a global advocacy organisation with members that represent more than 10 000 startups, Allied For Startups has launched the Advisory Board in order to address the issues currently facing startups across Africa, Europe, and America. 

African, European, and American tech leaders join new Allied For Startups Advisory Board

According to a recent study, conducted in collaboration with 120 VC funds, more than 90% of startups have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, with one in three forced to let go of full-time employees. This study has indicated that many startups are facing an urgent crisis due to the impacts of the pandemic. 

Comprised of a majority female Advisory Board, the team brings together policymakers, founders, and investors from Africa, Europe, and America. The wide scope of members facilitates an open conversation and mindset to tackling the challenges faced by startups and providing solutions. 

Melissa Blaustein, Allied For Startups CEO, comments on the announcement of the new Advisory Board. 

“Startups will be the champions and unicorns that drive our economic recovery from this crisis, and the innovators that will make our society more resilient going forward.

We need new ideas and a diversity of perspectives to overcome the challenges and realise the opportunities of this defining moment for startups and I’m delighted to bring together a group of experts from the highest levels of industry and policy in our Advisory Board to do just that.”

Founded in 2014, Allied For Startups is the global voice of startups worldwide in politics and government. It is an advocacy network of startup organisations reaching across 33 countries and four continents. Startups are the number one driver for jobs, innovation, and economic growth.

Allied For Startups aims to ensure that the policy environment around the globe allows its full potential to be realised. 

The Advisory Board 

The new Board will guide the activities of Allied for Startups on a strategic level, raise awareness of critical issues, and function as a sounding board for new ideas and policy objectives for the organisation. It will provide expert analysis to better identify, advocate, and influence the issues affecting digital startups. 

The Advisory Board’s number one focus is to ensure that the startups are able to access the support they require to survive and overcome the current crisis.

One of the pivotal issues which they will address is ensuring that the outdated rules such as those governing state aid for companies, often favouring large holders, does not continue to prevent access to vital aid for startups during the current pandemic. 

Although the crisis may adversely affect startups, it could also present an opportunity specifically for dynamic startup companies. According to Allied For Startups, 50 ‘unicorns’ were founded during the 2008 crisis and 18% of startups have already pivoted in response to the Covid-19 crisis. 

Mathew Kwame Tsamenyi, Advisory Board Member and Executive Director of the China European International Business School in Ghana, exclaims his excitement to be apart of the new initiative. 

“I am delighted to join the Allied For Startups Advisory Board to help advance the cause of startups around the world. I’m very pleased to see the wide geographic perspective included in the make up of this superb Advisory Board and I look forward to getting down to work.”

Members of the Advisory Board 

There are the members of the new Advisory Board:

  1. Robert Madelin, Former Director-General, DG Connect, European Commission
  2. Kat Borlongan, Head, Le French Tech 
  3. Marie Ekeland, Founder Daphni Fund, and 2030 Fund 
  4. Frances Burwell, Distinguished Senior Fellow, Atlantic Council 
  5. Kathryn Brown, Former President, Internet Society 
  6. Mathew Tsamenyi, Executive Director, China European International Business School, Ghana
  7. Eva Kaili, Member of European Parliament

Read more: Entrepreneur-driven Venture Capital Fund E4E Africa launches in SA

Feature image: Mathew Kwame Tsamenyi, Advisory Board Member and Executive Director of the China European International Business School in Ghana, (Supplied) 



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