On August 30th, the Social & Inclusive Business Camp (SIBC) officially launched its 6th edition, welcoming the 43 entrepreneurs selected for the 2022 cohort. These social and inclusive entrepreneurs were chosen among more than 380 applications across Africa to participate in an intensive program aimed at preparing them for scaling up, through training, mentoring, peer-to-peer exchanges and meetings with investors.
To contribute to the acceleration of social and inclusive innovation on the African continent; This is the objective set by the French Development Agency with the launch of the Social & Inclusive Business Camp (SIBC) program in 2017, led by the AFD Campus.
Each year, the SIBC brings to a cohort of English- and French-speaking African entrepreneurs a very thorough support on 5 key themes for their scale up. Leadership, formalization of scaling up, structuration of a team, impact measurement and investment readiness are deeply explored during 13 weeks of online training and 5 days of intensive practical bootcamp in Marseille. Entrepreneurs are then invited to participate in the Emerging Valley Summit, on the 28th and 29th of November to meet key stakeholders of the ecosystem, in particular through speed-meeting sessions with international investors.
In addition to training and the creation of funding opportunities, SIBC puts at the heart of its program the animation of a vibrant community of nearly 240 entrepreneurs, who are committed to developing more sustainable and inclusive businesses in a variety of sectors such as agri-food, sustainable development, energy, education and health. SIBC laureates hence benefit from this network as well as from mentoring by the programme’s alumni.
This year, the program greets a new cohort of 43 entrepreneurs, who promote projects with high impact potential on the continent.
An innovative support program dedicated to entrepreneurs in their growth phase
Since 2020, the program has been implemented by a consortium of partners – Investisseurs & Partenaires, African Management Institute (AMI),, ScaleChanger and StartupBRICS. With a solid teaching team and a detailed knowledge of African entrepreneurship, the consortium ensures the skills development of entrepreneurs through innovative pedagogies and networking with the African ecosystem as well as with potential investors.
The SIBC’s educational path is based on 3 axes of support to best prepare companies for their future stages of development:
- Three months of distance learning, bringing the cohort together every two weeks in live sessions, and through practical open access resources and tools around the key themes of the program.
- One week of bootcamp in Marseille with the objective of enabling entrepreneurs to deepen the themes studied and put into practice their learnings, followed by their participation in the EMERGING Valley summit to pitch their projects and meet potential investors.
- A mentoring programme, linking each laureate to one alumnus from a previous promotion for the duration of the program.
In addition to this, the SIBC is also a community which brings together a wide network of stakeholders, including:
- An African community of alumni, connected to each other and developing lines of collaboration (strategic partnerships, access to new markets, contacts, etc.), well beyond the program itself.
- Entrepreneurs and experts (investors, human resources specialists, management coaches or leaders of booming companies)that entrepreneurs will be able to meet throughout the program, to learn from them and be inspired. These meetings might lead to technical or financial partnerships.
As it is the last edition of the SIBC in its current form, this 2022 promotion is all more expected. The week of the bootcamp, followed by the Emerging Valley 2022 summit, will thus be an opportunity for the AFD and the consortium to reflect on the highlights and great successes of the SIBC over the past six years.
Women entrepreneurs in the spotlight, composing more than half of this 2022 cohort
This year, 43 companies from 18 African countries will participate in the SIBC. Most of them have been selected as part of a call for applications dedicated to the SIBC. The 7 others are the winners of the 2022 edition of two partner competitions of the program:
- EMERGING Mediterranean, an unprecedented program to accelerate and scale up Maghreb startups in Tech for Good and positive innovation (6 winners);
- RFI Africa App Challenge, a competition to support the development of digital applications in the field of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to promote agriculture (1 winner).
Working in various sectors (agri-food, sustainable development, energy, education, health, etc.), more than half of this year’s selected entrepreneurs are women. All of them share inspiring and hopeful journeys, through their entrepreneurial commitment to tackle social and/or environmental issues. They thus combine economic viability with impact and they all innovate in the products and services they develop, in their value chains or even in the construction of their economic model.