SOURCE: Capital FM

Seven women-led startups have received a total of Sh9.8 million in seed funding from Standard Chartered Kenya.

Under the Women in Tech program, the lender partners with the iBizAfrica Incubation Centre at Strathmore University to support women, which attracted 15 female-led startups under the theme ‘Leveraging Technology for Impact’.

The seven start-ups that have received funding are: Sign with Us, Instruct Africa, Saidiwa Rides, PanaCare, Imani Health, Know Learning Limited, and Rhea Soil Health Management.

“Supporting women-led enterprises is a key component of our ambition to impact and influence the growth of the SME sector, and the Women in Tech programme enables us to bring this vision to life,” said Kariuki Ngari, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Kenya.

“We have been able to catalyse growth through our latest cohort and are confident that the entrepreneurs who have gone through the programme will be better positioned to take up the opportunities in across the various sectors that they serve,” he added.

Each of the seven start-ups will receive Sh1.4 million (USD 10,000) in seed funding from the bank, joining a list of 25 other women-led ventures that have been through the program.

The 6th cohort of the Women in Tech Program was launched in March 2023 and attracted a pool of over 250 startups from sectors such as agriculture, finance, transportation, health, and the construction industry.

Fifteen female-led startups were shortlisted and underwent a three-month incubation that covered modules such as business plan ideation, strategy formulation, the Internet of Things (IoT), marketing, big data, and artificial intelligence.

Since its inception, the Women in Tech program has trained more than 64 women-led businesses leveraging technology by offering mentorship, advisory, coaching, networking opportunities, access to seed capital, and investor forums to help scale their businesses to international standards.

To date, 32 start-ups have been awarded over Sh1.2 million (USD 10,000) each in seed funding, with the first five cohorts attracting over 2,000 applications.

“Our programme has proven that when women receive the right mentorship, training and coaching, the tech ecosystem in Africa can thrive even more,” Vincent Ogutu, Vice Chancellor, Strathmore University added.

“Our partnership reveals the value that academia and the Private sector need to collaborate more for programs like this that support women-led businesses.”

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