Standard Chartered Kenya, in collaboration with @iBizAfrica – Strathmore University, has announced the selection of 15 women-led startups for the Women in Tech Programme. The program aims to provide business incubation training over 12 weeks to these startups, culminating in seven businesses receiving US$10,000 each in funding.
The Women in Tech Programme, supported by Standard Chartered, offers female-led entrepreneurial teams access to business management training, mentoring, and seed funding. This year’s cohort of 15 teams was chosen from a competitive pool of over 250 startups across various sectors. The program has expanded from previous cohorts, which incubated 10 businesses and provided funding to five startups per cohort.
The selected companies for this year’s program include Ecorich Solutions, Imani Health Wallet, Sol Active, Saidiwa Rides, Ento Farm, AgriTech Analytics, Techtenum Minds, MyAfya Africa, Rhea Soil Health Management, Know Learning, Sign With Us, Acre-insights, Instruct Africa, Panacare, and Tynka Global.
Standard Chartered’s commitment to funding this program stems from research that highlighted the disparities in funding between female-led startups and their male counterparts in Africa. In 2022, female-led enterprises faced more challenges due to societal barriers and limited access to financing. The Women in Tech Programme aims to bridge this gap by providing increased capacity building and focused funding specifically for female-led enterprises.
Joyce Kibe, the Head of Corporate Affairs, Brand, and Marketing in East Africa at Standard Chartered, expressed the bank’s satisfaction in contributing to closing the funding gap through capacity building and targeted support for female-led startups. The program’s focus on empowering women entrepreneurs aligns with Standard Chartered’s commitment to fostering inclusive economic growth and supporting the development of the startup ecosystem in Kenya.
By providing training, mentorship, and funding opportunities, the Women in Tech Programme aims to empower these 15 women-led startups, enabling them to scale their businesses, overcome challenges, and make a significant impact in their respective industries. The collaboration between Standard Chartered and @iBizAfrica – Strathmore University underscores the importance of public-private partnerships in driving entrepreneurship and advancing gender equality in the technology sector.
As the Women in Tech Programme continues to empower and uplift women entrepreneurs in Kenya, it sets a positive precedent for the industry. By addressing the specific needs and challenges faced by female-led startups, the program contributes to a more inclusive and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem, fostering innovation and economic growth in the country.