CatalyzU and Future Africa launch fellowship to back African founders

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May 2, 2024
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2 min read
Luke Mostert (Left) and Karl Nchite (Right) founder of CatalyzU, formerly Young African Catalysts (YAC)

The news: 

  • CatalyzU (formerly Young African Catalysts), a tech-enabled ecosystem that uses data to vet, train, and help African talents find work, has announced its partnership with a pan-African venture capitalist (VC) firm, Future Africa, to launch the “How to Startup” Fellowship following the success of their Venture Capital Fellowships.
  • According to a press release obtained by Techpoint Africa, the 7-week online programme is designed to provide African entrepreneurs with relevant knowledge and skills for building successful businesses both within and outside the continent. 
  • Starting May 23, 2024, the fellowship will require participants to pay $800 in tuition fees. Application to the programme will close on May 14, 2024. 

CatalyzU and Future Africa note that the initiative targets “startup founders, aspiring founders, and startup employees,” as well as corporate innovators looking to start and scale innovative ideas on the continent. 

The “How to Startup” Fellowship, developed by a team of experienced African founders and VCs, is expected to be an immersive programme that will offer customised, experiential training away from the typical entrepreneurship education.

In addition to learning directly from experts, the fellowship is also said to be structured to expose participants to practical strategies from “live learning and real-world case studies.” the approach will ensure a deeper understanding of the unique circumstances in the African startup ecosystem. 

The fellowship curriculum will teach participants how to validate startup ideas, create Minimum Viable Products, navigate legal and financial complexities, and effectively raise capital.

The lineup of instructors includes Iyinoluwa E. Aboyeji, Co-founder of Andela, Flutterwave, and Future Africa, and Mia Koschitzky-Kimani, Managing Partner at Future Africa and Co-founder of DukaConnect. 

After the completion of the “How to Startup” Fellowship, fellows will graduate into the Young African Catalyst network — CatalyzU’s Alumni Network that hosts more than 200 founders and VCs across Africa — where they’ll be provided with ongoing support and partnership opportunities. 

Karl Nchite, the Co-founder and CEO of CatalyzU, expressed excitement over the launch of the fellowship which he explained is to “empower the next generation” startups in Africa, a continent he described as home to a vibrant and rapidly growing entrepreneurial landscape. 

https://podcast.techpoint.africa/episodes/tech-recruiter-explains-what-it-costs-to-employ-new-talents

"By providing hands-on, live learning experiences and access to an extensive network of industry leaders, we're equipping entrepreneurs with the tools and support they need to turn their innovative ideas into thriving businesses," Nchite stated.

Applications for the fellowship will be reviewed and accepted as they are received until spots fill up.  In July 2023, the same time it rebranded from Young African Catalysts, CatalyzU announced getting into Techstars Toronto, joining 23 other startups from Canada and emerging markets.

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