Our solutions

Start Up Start-ups

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© Backdrop/Proparco


The AFD Group recognises the important role of start-ups in developing innovative solutions that respond to local needs in developing and emerging countries.

These start-ups have significant potential in terms of job creation and impact on local economic development.

AFD and Proparco thus bring together capital, resources and business know-how to support African entrepreneurs and their entrepreneurial ecosystems.

Key figures


€65 M

committed to supporting African start-ups by 2022, in partnership with local partners

See and/or download documents

Lynk transforms the informal sector in Kenya
Lynk transforms the informal sector in Kenya
With Andela, the best developers are also trained in Africa
With Andela, the best developers are also trained in Africa
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Our financing solutions


The Digital Africa funds for start-ups at seed stage

  • Through the Digital Africa initiative, AFD assists the most vulnerable digital start-ups which are setting out on their entrepreneurial adventure. Through this program, AFD is seeking to achieve two objectives: improve access to seed financing by offering a wide range of tools and allow entrepreneurs to move on to a further stage in the development of their project
  • AFD works with 4 partners that are experts in supporting and financing digital innovation in Africa: the consortium made up of the African Business Angels Network (ABAN) and AfriLabs, the Greentec Capital Africa Foundation, the association Entrepreneurs & Développement, which draws on the capacities of the Investisseurs & Partenaires group, and the Mercy Corps Europe – Suguba consortium. Their field of action covers 45 countries.


Via partner investment funds


  • Proparco supports venture capital funds that invest in African start-ups and SMEs at early and growth stage. Through our local partners, startup can get access to equity financing and benefit from local expertise, knowledge and training to boost their development

If you are an entrepreneur looking for local investors, please contact directly our local partners


Direct investments by Proparco


  • Proparco can also invest directly into start-ups, looking to scale-up innovative business models with high developmental impact in Africa. As a minority shareholder, our investment amounts range on average between €500K to €3M and we target companies with a track record of conclusive results, a recognized management team and strong development ambitions.
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Our support and advisory solutions


Capacity building and advisory services

PictoAFD Group is an active long-term partner, combining financing and technical and strategic assistance.

In addition to assisting with general business needs, PROPARCO can also provide targeted support to address the main challenges encountered by start-ups when they scale up. This support mainly targets start-ups financed by AFD Group via Proparco & FISEA and addresses the following issues:

  • The strong need to structure and build the skills of these companies in a hyper-growth phase (governance, HR structuring, retaining and attracting talent, implementation of management systems…),
  • Intensive support for managers for growth management,
  • Market consolidation and development (geographical expansion and product diversification).


Supporting the development of local entrepreneurial ecosystems


  • AFD supports structures that encourage innovation and entrepreneurship, such as incubators, accelerators and hubs, via capacity building and technical assistance programs. This support is provided via the Afric’Innov and AfriLabs programs.
  • This mechanism is complementary to the AFIDBA (AFD for Inclusive & Digital Business in Africa) project which supports and finances incubators. The aim is to develop services to strengthen African start-ups with a digital dimension and impact in order to contribute to their scaling up.

Consult the list below to see the local partner incubators and find out more about the services available (financing, mentoring, training, etc.)


Acceleration programme for African entrepreneurs

  • A programme that provides high social impact entrepreneurs in Africa with the springboard that they need to accelerate and scale-up their projects. The SIB Camp brings together a community of 60 African entrepreneurs to engage with experts, receive mentoring, work on concrete scaling-up solutions, share experiences, network, etc
  • After being imagined and incubated by the AFD Campus du Développement, the SIBC will be piloted over the next three years by I&P Conseil and its partners – African Management Institute, ScaleChanger and StartupBRICS – to accelerate its deployment, particularly in Africa.


Supporting digital innovation in Africa

  • The initiative is led by the Digital Africa Association, a consortium of public and private actors (including AFD) active in the field of innovation and entrepreneurship in Africa. It is an online platform where entrepreneurs, investors and innovation facilitators can meet, exchange, collaborate and share resources to strengthen collaborative dynamics in their respective sectors and communities.
  • It is also the endorsement of a seed funds from AFD operated by 4 local partners in Africa.


Competition for digital start-ups in Africa
  • The AFD Digital Challenge is an annual competition which rewards five to ten start-ups that have developed innovative solutions for Africa. They receive a EUR 20,000 award and a year of support to continue and implement their project.
© Backdrop for Proparco


Explore the map to discover some of the start-ups, venture capital funds and entrepreneurial structures that the AFD Group supports in Africa.


Investment type

Our local partners


To find our venture capital fund and incubator partners closest to you, please select your location.

wdt_IDName of partnerPartner typeLocationwhat financing/services are available ?Eligible companiesContact
1Bond’innovIncubatorFrance,AfricaSupport, financing, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Innovative start-ups/SMEs (health, biotechnology, environment, etc.)https://www.bondinnov.com/
2SaboutecIncubatorGuineaSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-ups in the ICT sectorhttp://www.saboutech.org/
3Cipmen NigerIncubatorNigerSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-upshttp://www.cipmen.org/
4CTIC DakarIncubatorSenegalSupport, guidance, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-ups in the ICT sectorhttp://cticdakar.com/fr_fr/
5La FabriqueIncubatorBurkina FasoSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Social businesseshttps://www.lafabrique-bf.com/
6EtriLabs BéninIncubator/AcceleratorBeninSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-upshttps://etrilabs.com/
7Innohub LimitedIncubator/AcceleratorGhanaSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-upshttp://www.innohub.com.gh/
8MakeSense - DakarIncubatorSenegalSupport, training (design thinking, collective intelligence)SMEs/start-upshttps://africa.makesense.org/contact/
9NUMA MarocIncubatorMoroccoSupport, co-working spaces, networking, etc.Start-upshttps://www.numa.co/acceleration-startup-casablanca
10Carthage Business Angels (CBA)Business angels networkTunisiaSupport, networking, etc.Start-upshttp://www.cba.tn
Partner typeLocationwhat financing/services are available ?

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