Five African Scholarship Programs for Aspiring VCs

by MMC
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Venture capital is a field of business that provides capital to startups and small businesses. Venture capital (VC) firms invest in these companies in the hopes of earning a significant return on their investment in the future.

The venture capital industry has been around for decades, but its popularity has exploded in recent years due to the growth of tech startups. According to a AVCA reportFrom 2014 to 2021, the number of venture capital deals on the continent grew at a compound annual rate of 32%.

Venture capital fellowship programs typically involve a year-long program of coursework and mentoring. They provide future investors, entrepreneurs and general partners with the opportunity to learn about all aspects of the venture capital industry and gain real venture capital experience while benefiting from mentoring, access to events and a network of peers.

A VC fellowship program is right for you if you are a recent graduate, an experienced professional looking to make a transition, or a startup founder looking to network or understand the nuances of venture capital. Like accelerator programs for founders, exchanges provide a platform for aspiring venture capitalists to immerse themselves in the world of venture capital.

If you are an African graduate, professional and entrepreneur trying to get into venture capital, here are five African venture capital exchanges you should consider participating in.

VC Dream Scholarship

Dream of venture capital is an investor accelerator that offers remote community venture capital scholarships specifically focused on the African continent. The programs offer a comprehensive curriculum, hands-on training and direct exposure to world-class investors, providing the ideal launch pad for aspiring and current investors looking to enter the African venture capital sector.

Former fellows have gone on to launch investment funds, establish accelerators and startup hubs, and join new and established investment funds in Africa and beyond.

Dream of venture capital fellows work with more than 35 venture capital and private equity funds, including Ajim Capital, Capria Ventures, Future Africa, Lateral Frontiers, Oui Capital, Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures and many others, and invest in hundreds of startups.

African Private Equity Stock Exchange

The African Private Equity Fellowship offers talented young investors the opportunity to meet their peers during an executive program covering all aspects of private equity, private credit and venture capital. The program brings together 50 young professionals, men and women, from the African continent, for a period of 6 months.

The exchange combines experience sharing, in-depth technical and sectoral analyzes and networking through thematic videos, working sessions with experienced professionals and case studies inspired by real investment cases.

The exchange is supported by industry partners including: I&P, Adenia, Convergence Partners, Meridiam, Africinvest, Amethis, Oncologie & Diagnostic du Maroc, XSML, Mediterrania Capital Partners, Metier, Exeo Capital, Uhuru Investment Partners, DPI, TLcom Capital.

Venture Capital Fellows in Africa

THE Venture Capital Fellows in Africa (AVCF) is an initiative of the Global Leaders of Tomorrow (GLT) of the World Economic Forum. The program aims to promote venture capital in Africa by educating and training future venture capitalists and leaders of high-growth and start-up companies based in Africa.

Participants will receive a training stipend to support them, as well as insurance and other higher education qualifications, preferably from an African university, and will have 3-5 years of full-time work experience in Africa.

Aspiring for a VC scholarship

THE Aspiring for a VC scholarship is a professional program for young professionals seeking to become the next generation of young African catalysts in the continent’s venture capital ecosystem.

Although this is a paid program, participants make presentations during the demo day for a chance to secure an internship opportunity at a partner’s fund. The scholarship is aimed at everyone under 35, whether you have 0 or 8 years of professional experience or have a background in finance or marketing.

Crucial topics examined in the right one-week program include Market Mapping, Investment Process, Startup Analysis, Financial Funds and Modeling, Impact Investing, Fundraising Options and career options.

Africa Impact Investing Scholarship

African Impact Investing Exchange is an initiative of the African Venture Philanthropy Alliance aimed at encouraging deployers of impact capital – grants, debt and equity – to become more effective impact investing practitioners.

This fellowship builds fellows’ capabilities and knowledge in areas such as innovative finance, impact measurement and management, and leadership in complexity. As a participant, you will understand the latest regional and global trends, network and improve your impact investing skills.

To qualify for the scholarship, you must deploy capital along the capital continuum – grants, debt and equity. Potential candidates would ideally come from foundations, DFIs, private equity and venture capital funds, family offices, NGOs, aid agencies, governments, corporations, incubators and accelerators; those who have access to capital or who are responsible for investment portfolios and who are accustomed to managing the assets of high net worth individuals, families or funds. These individuals are deploying or intending to deploy capital with a view to impact investing in Africa.

Final Thoughts

By joining a venture capital exchange, you will learn how to differentiate good startups from great ones, build a network of other venture capital firms, and better understand what venture capital firms are looking for. Even as a founder, you can use scholarships to obtain venture capital funding by connecting with fellows and sharing information about your startup.

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