Africa House empowers 10 startups with $1m entrepreneurial support
Startup accelerator Africa House, in partnership with the Platform Capital Group, is set to invest in 10 enterprises with an aggregated $1 million in funding, technical and business assistance, and in-kind benefits that will propel them towards entrepreneurial success at the highest level.
Launched recently in Plano, Texas and commissioned by the Senior Pastor, Potters House, Dallas, Texas, Bishop TD Jakes, the Platform Capital and Eshirya Africa partnership links investors with and provides a support ecosystem for entrepreneurs and innovators of African descent including African-Americans, to actualize their business ambitions and play their role in the global curating of the Africa of their dreams.
Its Africa House Fund Pitch Contest is designed to equip startups with global access to offices, networks, mentorship, training, events, funding and resources that will keep them competitive without the usual limiting barriers. Inductees join an exclusive group of individuals and organizations passionate about Africa, which is increasingly becoming a choice destination for investments on the global stage.
The two-day event featured an official ribbon-cutting, masterclasses and highly engaging pitch sessions, from which a nine-man panel of judges – including Eric Taylor, founder and CEO, Trident Capital; Osh Agabi, founder and CEO, Koniku Inc.; Rodney Williams, co-founder and chairman, Solo Funds; Banji Awosika, MD, West Orange Nephrology – announced selections. The pitch session heralded an incisive group plenary tagged ‘Powering Africa: Unlocking the Potential and Opportunities for Entrepreneurship’.
“Our goal is not just to help people make money. Rather, it is to unlock gratitude in society with ideas single-mindedly focused on solving demonstrable human problems across the world and with significant impact on GDP, per capita income and per capita, GNI figures anywhere in the world and especially the African continent,” said Olakunle Soriyan, futurist/global thought leader and CEO, Africa House.
Entrepreneurs who scaled the maiden edition of the Pitch Contest include George Brownell, SOPE; Morgan White, Back2SchoolLA; Olusola Amusan, Vesti Official; Izin Akioya, SAG Logistics; Michael Akindele, Surplus Farms; Nneka Oka, LuxeButta; Ololade Okubena, Blazing Ideas Ltd; Vanessa Samu-Adijuah, Ment4Her; Damilare Kujembola, Amplify Africa; and Olu Ogunlela, Lifthrims Incorporated.
The entrepreneurs were inducted into the Africa House Unicorn Incubation Programme 2021 Plano, Texas Cohort. The six-month programme is powered by leading growth markets investors, the Platform Capital Group and the US 501c3 Exempt non-profit, Eshirya Africa. The programme will provide customized support from experienced mentors, and each entrepreneur will receive technical and business assistance, funding and in-kind benefits valued at $100,000 each.
“Humans are people of intentions,” said Akintoye Akindele, investor, entrepreneur, philanthropist, chairman of Atlantic and DuPort Midstream, Platform Capital and Africa House.
“The assumption that ideas propelled with the right support and resources can engender socio-economic change at any level is more than true. It is a critical part of what we are about,” Akindele said.
In five years, Africa House is looking to provide similar technical and financial empowerment to 1,000 entrepreneurs, who will then impact 10,000 families and 1 million people at scale.