Yei programme helps SA startups expand to France

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The Embassy of France in South Africa and the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) have opened applications for the Young Enterprise Initiative (Yei) South Africa programme, which helps early-stage startups expand to France.

The global Yei programme, implemented in South Africa by the Embassy of France in South Africa and the TIA in collaboration with Hello Tomorrow, is an accelerator aimed at enabling science-based companies to get to know the French research and innovation environment and to provide market access opportunities in French and global markets. 

Its aim is to provide an enabling environment that will contribute to increased global competitiveness of the South African companies and assist French technical experts from a network of incubators to identify and nurture innovative technologies. It will be implemented in parallel with similar programmes in the United States (US), Canada, Germany, Italy, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Singapore and Taiwan. 

Three South African companies will be selected for the programme and travel to France in early 2020 to attend the 2020 Hello Tomorrow Global Summit and spend a further personalised week meeting with potential partners, taking part in training sessions, and setting up business operations. 

Applicants must be developing a new technology based on artificial intelligence (AI) in any industry, and clearly show potential for French and European markets. Applications are open until November 22, with selected companies announced in December.

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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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