Facebook says it is collaborating with Co-Creation Hub (CCHub) to mentor and empower 12 startups in the ”Season 2 FbStart Accelerator Programme.”
Kendra Nnachi, Facebook Startups and Developers Programme Manager, said on Thursday in Lagos that the programme had been extended to startups in Ghana.
Nnachi said that the second edition of the programme was a renewal of Facebook’s commitment to supporting and empowering local innovators and upcoming entrepreneurs in realising their business goals.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the FbStart Accelerator is a research and mentorship driven six-months programme for innovative and visionary teams, daring to create solutions with advanced technologies.
She said that the accelerator programme provided the startups with the support they needed to build and optimise value driven products and match them with resources from Facebook and CcHUB.
According to her, Facebook and CcHUB have started accepting applications for Season 2 of the FbStart Accelerator and have opened the programme to Ghanian innovators as well.
”We are delighted to be bringing back the FbStart Accelerator programme to Nigeria for the second year, and now expanding this to applicants from Ghana.
”Given our passion for connecting people and helping developers and entrepreneurs to thrive, we can’t wait to see how this year’s cohort develop and build solutions and technology to engage and empower people across Nigeria, Ghana and potentially the continent.
”If you are building a solution that leverages advanced technologies – Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), Data Science and Extended Reality – in Nigeria and Ghana, the accelerator is designed to help you grow,” she said.
Ms Nnachi said that the season one of the programme saw 15 startup and student teams graduate on April 12, 2019.
She said that as at April 2019, the graduating teams had cumulatively raised over $400,000 in investments and grants.
”FbStart Accelerator Season 2 will be made up of 12 startup teams receiving up to $20,000 in equity.
”They will receive funding, one-on-one mentorship from Facebook and CcHUB, access to corporates, industry experts, $16,000 in product credits and more.
”Interested teams can apply via www.cchubnigeria.com/fbstart, with applications open until June 30, 2019,” Nnachi said.
The Chief Executive Officer, CcHUB, Bosun Tijani, said that the hub was delighted to be renewing its support to innovators who were building the future of Africa.
”By renewing our partnership with Facebook, we will continue to deepen adoption of advanced technologies across Africa and inspire the next generation of innovators to compete globally,” Tijani said.
One of the participants in the 2018 cohort, Moses Olafenwa, the CEO of DeepQuestAI, said that the FbStart Accelerator programme had incredibly transformed its team from aspiring innovators to world-class solution creators.
”Our team has the best possible support from some of the most diligent tech facilitators, in addition to the immense financial and infrastructural support we got,” Olafenwa said.
Like in 2018, Facebook, CcHUB and partner hubs would also hold roadshow events in 10 states across the country.
The aim was to enlighten students and entrepreneurs about deep-tech, while encouraging them to build solutions with advanced technologies and promote the programme.