Black female founders invited to apply for SA accelerator programme


Applications have opened for the I’M IN Accelerator, which offers black female founders access to funding, mentorship and training.

Launched in 2015, the I’M IN Accelerator runs an annual cohort for 10 months, backing early-stage black-owned technology startups to achieve sustainable rapid market growth by providing ZAR1.5 million (US$102,000) in pre-seed investment as well as business and technical support as well as commercialisation enablement. 

It invests in startups with teams that have demonstrated high execution rate, minimum viable product showing credible traction and market potential, and has so far invested in 35 startups. Applications are now open for cohort four, exclusively targeting black women-owned early-stage startups. 

“We are looking for exciting and disruptive technology solutions across all verticals. More importantly, we want to partner with early-stage start-up Black women founders that are obsessed with execution, are mission driven and very knowledgeable in their markets.” said Octavius Phukubye, I’M IN Accelerator manager. 

To qualify, startups need to have a minimum viable product, be a South African company with a 51 per cent black-ownership profile from a BBBEEE perspective, have visible traction in the market, and committed, skilled team members who have a vested interest in the long-term sustainability of the business. 

The accelerator’s mission is to produce a pipeline of investment-ready startups for follow-on capital, commercial opportunities, and market growth for the ecosystem. A total of 15 startups are earmarked to be part of cohort four, and applications are open until March 5.


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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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