Nigerian investment fund GreenHouse Capital has launched GreenHouse Lab, an accelerator programme focused on building world class, women-led technology companies.
Its new GreenHouse Lab programme, for which applications are now open, aims to equip female entrepreneurs with the skills, resources and support needed to rapidly grow and scale their companies in emerging African markets.
“We do this by helping startups validate their ideas, bring their products to market and ultimately, attract venture capital investment,” GreenHouse Capital said.
GreenHouse Lab features an intensive curriculum delivered in-person and virtually over the course of three months. The programme leverages existing entrepreneurship education frameworks and focuses on a variety of key topics including, but not limited to, product development, market segmentation, human capital, marketing, and fundraising.
In addition to a structured curriculum, cohort participants are also required to engage in the hands-on application of concepts and practices learned throughout the programme. Other channels of engagement include weekly dinners, office hours with the Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIRs), mentor meetups and a peer-learning field trip.
The programme concludes with a demo day where all the startups present their ideas to a select group of investors and media. After demo day, GreenHouse Capital will continue to support and engage with the companies on an ongoing basis.
“We’re looking for the most passionate entrepreneurs who are 100 per cent dedicated to their ideas and understand that the journey to sustainable success will require a high level of drive and commitment,” the company said.
“Beyond this, we’re looking for early stage, investment-ready technology startups that have identified a critical need in Africa and are building an effective, sustainable and scalable solution. We’re looking for companies that have developed, at a minimum, a beta product and are in the process of refining their go-to-market strategy, building out sales channels and generating revenue.”
Each startup must have at least one woman on their leadership team. Selected startups will be required to commit full-time to the Lagos-based programme.
While there are no initial GreenHouse Capital investments in the participating startups, we reserve the option of investing a minimum of US$100,000 for equity within any of the companies if we have been able to help them reach specific milestones through the programme,” the company said.
“Most importantly, we prepare each startup to put their best foot – and product – forward during demo day which takes place at the conclusion of the programme, and introduces the companies to a variety of investors within our wide network. These investors may offer additional investment beyond the US$100,000 minimum offered by GreenHouse Capital.”
The 2018 batch of startups will begin the programme in mid-August and end in mid-November.