Black Founders Fund: Africa

Team photo.
Africa - Hybrid
6 months

Google for Startups Black Founders Fund: Africa provides cash awards — without giving up equity in return — and hands-on support to help Black entrepreneurs in Africa build and grow their businesses.

Team photo.
Africa - Hybrid
6 months

Applications are now closed

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About the initiative

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About the initiative

Established in 2020, the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund has awarded more than $30 million to help Black-led startups in Africa, Brazil, Europe, and the United States secure funding, strengthen communities, and create generational change.

In addition to equity-free cash awards, Black Founders Fund recipients receive ongoing Google mentorship, Google Cloud credits, and product support to help them navigate every stage of their startup journey.

Key benefits

  • Access to capital

    Up to $150,000 in equity-free cash will be awarded to each startup.

  • Google Cloud credits and support

    Receive Google Cloud credits and dedicated support via the Google for Startups Cloud Program.

  • Founder network

    Connect and get support from fellow founders as part of the Google for Startups alumni network.

  • Custom mentorship

    Receive tailored product and leadership support from Google mentors and industry experts.

  • Leadership training

    Become a more effective leader through research-based strategies and expert coaching.

Entry Criteria

Entry Criteria

  • Diverse companies with at least one Black founder in their founding team
  • Between Seed and Series A
  • Seeking to raise a round of seed funding to develop their next stage of growth
  • Building a scalable product or service with a significant total addressable market and defensible growth model
Like many founders, we’re always dreaming of growth and this Black Founders Fund helped us craft a path to growth and really amplified our efforts globally
Tebogo Mokwena,
cofounder of Akiba Digital

Meet the latest cohort

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Interested in learning more about our alumni? Browse our global directory and discover startups across regions and industries.

Learn more

Frequently asked questions

Why is Google for Startups doing this?

We believe that funding Black founders empowers entire communities. Access to capital and support leads to greater economic opportunity. Google is uniquely positioned to provide capital and support to help founders grow their businesses, and in turn, create space for founders to succeed and create greater impact for their community. The goal of these funds is to increase economic opportunity for promising Black startup founders. We hope this funding and support can catalyze the growth of Black-led startups, foster innovative solutions to tough problems, and ultimately generate wealth for their communities. Since 2021, Google for Startups has invested $13M in cash funding to founders across Europe and Africa who have gone on to raise $205M in follow-on funding.

What does a recipient from the Black Founders Fund receive?

The Google for Startups Black Founders Fund provides founders with $150K in non-dilutive capital to help fuel their Black businesses. Recipients will also receive $100K in Google Cloud credits, hands-on mentorship and support across the company.

How do I apply for the Black Founders Fund?

You apply during the call for applications, please look out for the next one.

My product hasn’t launched yet. Can I still apply?

We’re looking for startups with an active MVP in the pilot stage or released products. So if your company hasn’t launched a product quite yet, we ask that you are actively testing with at least one potential customer or wait to apply until you’ve reached this milestone.

Does it matter if I'm not using Google Cloud or other Google products?

No, you don’t need to be a Google customer to be eligible for the fund. You will have special access to Google resources as part of the program.

Is the program in-person or virtual?

The program is virtual with in-person opportunities taking place throughout the year.

If my company is selected, will Google become an equity partner?

No, the Black Founders Fund is an equity-free investment. That means there is no shareholding or financial counterpart of any kind. Google won’t be part of your startup's corporate structure or have any kind of financial return on the investment.