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Top 10 start-ups at innovation week to receive funding

By Graham Kajilwa | July 17th 2016 at 13:46:34 GMT +0300

ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru

Start-up enterprises that will emerge top in the upcoming Nairobi Innovation Week stand a chance to receive a boon from the country's multi-million-shilling corporates.

Nairobi Innovation Chairman Tonny Omwansa from the University of Nairobi said the committee in charge of the start-ups will not just recognise them with trophies as is the custom during competitions.

"The Ministry of Industrialisation is working on an elaborate programme to fund the 10 best start-ups," said Dr Omwansa.

He said the start-ups will also be mentored and coached for eight months so as to scale up and participate at the 2017 Innovation Week.

"Several banks and investment firms have been invited to listen to the pitches. They will have freedom to invest in these start-ups," he said.

According to the programme of the second Nairobi Innovation Week that will run from August 1-5, 2016 at the UoN, the event will culminate with pitches from start-up companies.

This will be on the last day when participants will be lectured on how to scale up their young businesses.

The panel, including Industry and Trade Principal Secretary Julius Korir, will explore how to propel start-ups to scale up more effectively, including interventions from both the government and the private sector.

Afterwards, some 10 pre-selected start-ups will be given a platform of six minutes each to pitch their business ideas before renowned business and government officials.

"They will be required to clearly articulate the concept, value proposition and business model. They also have to demonstrate the promise of the business and articulate the kind of partnership and support the start-up wants, including funding," said Dr Omwansa.

The requirement is flexible on age and composition, but all start-ups must have gained traction by getting customers, have a good and reputable business model, generated revenue and have a committed team.

Over 1,500 delegates are expected to converge in the event. According to the programme, some sessions will be held in other venues outside the UoN, considering the big number of participants.

Apart from PS Korir, other top state officials expected are Industrialisation Cabinet Secretary Aden Mohammed and his Information Communication Technology (ICT) counterpart Joe Mucheru.

Nairobi Innovation Week Start-up enterprises
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