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Harvard and AWS programme selected eleven African student-run startups

Eleven of the 25 businesses selected by Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Harvard Innovation Labs for the inaugural NextGen Accelerator are from Africa.

For early-stage student founders from historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and universities in Sub-Saharan Africa, the NextGen Accelerator is a two-week founder bootcamp.

Founders participate in daily sessions at the Harvard Innovation Labs that cover a range of subjects, including fundraising, pitching, market validation, customer discovery, and leadership techniques. The Schultz Family Foundation has awarded grants to the 25 participating ventures to help with lodging, food, and travel costs.

AWS is pledging to support more black and underrepresented founders in the startup community by providing NextGen Accelerator participants with access to AWS experts and $5,000 in AWS credits.

Four Ghanaian startups—the agri-tech company FeatheryCare (University of Ghana), the organic soil booster manufacturer Sabon Sake (Ashesi University), the mobile wallet Hurupay (Ashesi University), and the farmer financing solution LbH LC (University of Ghana)—are among the 25 student-led businesses chosen for the 2023 NextGen Accelerator.

Three are based in Kenya: Tawi Digital Health, a health tech company, Parksby, a parking platform, and AfyaBridge, an e-health startup at the University of Nairobi.

The South African fintech startup Puno (University of the Witwatersrand), the Tanzanian AR startup Smartdarasa (University of Dar es Salaam), the Nigerian payments platform Acceede (Federal University of Technology), and the Rwandan logistics platform HiQ Africa (African Leadership University) round out the list.

“We are thrilled to welcome student founders from colleges and universities across Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, and the US to Boston,” said Matt Segneri, Bruce and Bridgitt Evans executive director of the Harvard Innovation Labs. “These students are working on a wide range of inspirational products and services, and we look forward to seeing all they accomplish both during the NextGen Accelerator and beyond.”




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