Partech launches accelerator to help European startups expand to Africa

Paris-based tech investment firm Partech has launched Chapter54, an accelerator programme to support European startups wanting to expand into Africa, via its innovation division, Partech Shaker.

KfW Development Bank, on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), is funding Chapter54 to the tune of 5 million (R86 495 602.15).

Partech was founded in San Francisco and Paris and provides capital, operational expertise and strategic support to start-up, venture and growth-stage entrepreneurs. Its current portfolio includes over 200 companies in more than 30 countries, 14 of which are valued at more than USD 1 billion.

In 2020, 347 African tech start-ups raised a total of US$ 1.43 Billion in 359 equity rounds

“Because of its unique positioning in Tech ecosystems in both Europe & Africa, Partech Shaker was an excellent choice to be the sparring-partner of European scaleups willing to invest in Africa” says Dr. Jan Martin Witte, Director Global Equity and Funds at KfW.

The experience of European start-ups already active on the continent shows that a successful start in Africa requires market knowledge, local networks and access to skilled workers on the ground. Chapter54 offers a curated network of currently around 50 mentors and advisors from the field. Companies from all sectors are welcome – but they must have business experience, be registered in a European country and active in two European countries, and have a solid financial foundation and regular income.

Africa has great potential: a wealth of resources, entrepreneurial spirit, innovative strengths and cultural diversity. Every second African state now counts as a “middle-income country” – despite some setbacks due to the pandemic. The population is also growing rapidly: by 2050, Africa’s population will double. Already today, 40% of the population is under 15 years of age – and they are tech-savvy. By 2035, the continent will have the largest labour force in the world. 20 million new jobs will be needed per year,” said KfW.

Ten technology scaleup companies will be accepted annually for the next four years with the accelerator programme lasting eight months. Applications for the initial phase can be submitted from 7 February 2022 to 5 March 2022.

Interested companies can find out more and get in touch on the Chapter54 website.

Read more: Applications open for new SaaS-focused accelerator in Africa

Featured image: Jean van der Meulen from Pexels



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