US-based VC Openner to launch accelerator and invest in 50 Egyptian startups


Washington DC-based venture capital firm Openner is accepting applications from Egyptian start-ups, aiming to identify 50 startups to expand and scale them locally, regionally and globally through its accelerator.

A pre-seed and seed VC firm that has invested US$25 million in over 100 portfolio companies in the United States since 2016, Openner provides funding, technology and business resources as well infrastructure, access to customers and investors to startups that demonstrate technology innovation, with its accelerator programme offering startups specialised and custom-defined support.

Its new Egypt-based accelerator with work with 50 startups to make them ready for growth or acquisition. Applications are open all-year round, as no specified one-size-fits-all programme will be implemented. Rather, each portfolio startup will be subject to a custom-designed programme tailored to its needs, combining cash injection with growth resources while focusing on the startup’s product development, tech development and distribution. 

“We want startups to organically grow into revenue generating companies without having to raise funds, match them with a strategic investor when they are ready for rapid growth and position them as acquisition-ready,” founder and general partner of Openner Ash Rofail said. 

“We have a very strong and proven track record building companies that have exited or have become leaders in their target industries, with 10 per cent of our portfolio companies exiting within three years of operation. Openner is entering the Egyptian market because it believes in its geographic and cultural centrality, and its promising tech talent.”

Openner historically co-invested with Andreesen Horrowitz, NEA, Sequoia, Khosla Ventures, Y Combinator, Goldman Sachs and several other global top-tier VCs, and its portfolio companies received follow-up investments from ExxonMobil, Mastercard, CitiVentures and other multinationals, as well as from dozens of tier-1, US-based VCs.

Openner accelerator offers seed funding, technical product development, business development, legal, operations, backoffice as well as a partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and others, in addition to strategic guidance from top international executives who are mostly exiters and repeat founders, a path to fundraising, licensing deals and acquisition through its publicly traded company in the US.

Applications are ongoing all-year round and can be accessed here.

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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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