- After graduating 5,300 small and medium-sized businesses from Africa, Google Hustle Academy has selected 15 SMEs to receive support from the ₦75 million Hustle Academy Fund.
- The beneficiaries of the Fund, which does not demand an equity return, include Ifeoma Augusta Anselem of Rae's Clothing, Nafisa Abdulrazaq Sabo of Pinch N' Dash, John Samuel Andefiki of Kita Farm, Aminu Abdulkarim of A.A.K. Shoes, Anita Aletor of Rotela Business Synergy, and Ojo Femi Christopher of Foodlane Ventures.
- Financial support, mentorship, and business tools will also be available to SMBs.
Affordability and accessibility are two significant funding obstacles that African SMEs must contend with. Accessibility is the capacity of SMEs to secure financing, and it is often challenging for unregistered, informal businesses to do so. The cost of capital, or how much it costs a business to obtain a loan or an investment, is referred to as affordability.
Informal retailing makes up over 50% of sub-Saharan Africa's total official GDP, according to a report by Euromonitor International, demonstrating the sector's broad significance. The International Labour Organisation estimates that informal employment accounts for over 80% of total employment in some sub-Saharan African economies.
The inability of small and medium-sized businesses to obtain financing is a significant barrier to employment, economic growth, and shared prosperity in sub-Saharan Africa.
It is crucial to note that small and medium-sized businesses in Africa face significant challenges due to limited access to financing.
There are 44 million micro, small, and medium-sized businesses in sub-Saharan Africa alone; nearly all are micro. These companies require access to funding to grow, add jobs, and boost the economy. But 51% of these essential companies need more capital than they can get.
Consequently, the Hustle Academy programme addresses particular challenges, including funding, faced by small and medium-sized businesses in Africa, offering tools and practical skills to support their growth.
Since its inception in 2022, nearly 10,300 entrepreneurs have participated in the programme.
With 5,000 graduates in 2022, this year's class builds on that momentum, demonstrating a growing community of companies committed to ongoing learning and development.