Standard Chartered Bank, in partnership with Strathmore University, have shortlisted 40 start-ups for the Kes 20 million Standard Chartered Women in Tech Incubator capacity building programme.
The 40 have been shortlisted from more than 200 applications in the initiative targeting women-led start up teams of 2 – 3 people leveraging on technology as a key driver of innovation in business. The applicants were drawn from the general public, schools, colleges and universities in Kenya.
The 40 teams will advance to the selection pitch, a two stage process (semi-final and final) that will see only 10 of the best selected for the incubation program to compete for up to KES. 1 million in seed funding.
Dr. Joseph Sevilla, Director of @iBizAfrica- Strathmore University, noted that through the incubator program female-led startups in the ICT sector are envisaged to transform Kenya through innovation.
“This marks the beginning of a journey of innovation that will see top 10 female-led startups transform into viable businesses. We congratulate the shortlisted teams and wish them the best of luck in the remaining selection stages. It’s very encouraging that we received applications from all over the country! We believe the shortlisted teams have great potential for advancing to the finals. We thank our experienced judges for helping us shortlist the top 40 out of more than 180 applications,” added Dr. Joseph Sevilla.
The teams were shortlisted based on performance in the programme’s 100 points criteria such as female founder eligibility above 18 years, Teams of at least three people who demonstrated capacity to execute: clearly defined roles, balanced skill set (team lead, business development, product development and marketing). Addressing problems and solution innovation, availability of Market opportunity and social impact in Kenya.
The launch of the programme in Kenya follows a successful rollout of a similar initiative in USA by Standard Chartered. The Bank first launched the programme to support women in technology in 2014 at the City College of New York where it created the Women Entrepreneurs Resource Center. The US program includes a dedicated workspace, mentorship, coursework and access to an extensive network designed to support entrepreneurs navigating the challenges of starting a business.
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