Kenya’s Nailab to take in 4 batches of startups each year


Kenyan incubator Nailab has restructured in order to take in four batches of startups each year, an increase on the two annual cohorts it accepted previously.

Nailab, which took in its fifth cohort of startups in January, has been recently been handpicking startups for its sixth cohort, with those selected to join the incubator next month.

It has now opened a general call for applications, which will close temporarily on June 12. The handpicked startups and those who apply in the course of the week that meet the criteria will then pitch to a panel of judges, with the process then reopening on June 30 and remaining open until September.

The prolonged application process is due to the fact startups will now be joining the six-month Nailab programme every three months, with the incubator taking in four batches per year as opposed to the two batches it previously accepted annually.

Each cycle will feed into the previous to share market and product development experiences.

This week’s application process will culminate with an “Open Pitch Friday” where various startups will be called to pitch their concepts to the Nailab team and earn themselves a place on the shortlist.

“It’s important to note that creating innovative solutions is a continuous process.  It’s through sharing with like minds that one continues to refine an idea or solution. The Open Pitch Arena will help entrepreneurs to critically analyse the solutions they intend to provide and maximise the best offering with the development of their prototypes,” said Sam Gichuru, chief executive officer (CEO) and founder at the Nailab.


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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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