SPRING ACCELERATOR RETURNS TO EAST AFRICA: APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR COHORT 3

SPRING ACCELERATOR RETURNS TO EAST AFRICA: APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR COHORT 3

SPRING Accelerator is returning to East Africa for 2017, selecting its next cohort from Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, and adding Tanzania and Ethiopia. 

Applications are open on our website from 31 October 2016 to 1 December 2016.

We’re on the look-out for established, ambitious businesses across any and all sectors to address market opportunities and unmet needs for adolescent girls through the use of Human-Centred Design.

In our current portfolio, product and service innovations meet some of the following needs:

  • Saving time or money
  • Enabling girls to stay in school or learn
  • Earn, save or invest earnings and assets
  • Feel safe and secure, improving overall wellbeing

Up to 20 businesses will be selected to join the nine-month cohort, running from May 2017 to January 2018.

SPRING is working with 18 businesses from Cohort 1 in East Africa, and a further 18 as part of a second cohort in South Asia across Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.

Previous participants include EarthEnable, providing earthen flooring solutions that are 75% cheaper than concrete equivalents, opening up a high-growth market for home improvement in Rwanda. Dirt floors are breeding grounds for disease and pose a health threat to women and girls who are tasked with cleaning them. Through replacing dirt floors with sealed floors, the company envisages saving girls’ cleaning time and reducing their exposure to pathogens.

Easypaisa, Pakistan’s leading mobile banking service, is addressing a lack of ability for girls to save by developing a savings product branded specifically to girls aged 10-17. Their goal is to open doors for girls through facilitating saving for their futures and improving their aspirations.

WHY GIRLS?
Girls form the most vulnerable and underserved communities in the world. When girls are empowered, when they are able to learn, earn, save and stay safe, when their wellbeing is protected, when they receive the right support, they become agents for change in our communities. Businesses can fulfil the needs of girls by creating products or services that empower or enable girls to flourish. In turn, businesses create new market opportunities that lead to sustainable progress and change for communities.

WHY APPLY?
You get to completely rethink the way you approach business, make a real impact for girls, and expand your professional network with some of the best minds in business innovation – from SPRING’s technical team to like minded participating businesses across East Africa and South Asia, committed to innovation and girl impact. We’re leveraging their experience to provide an enriched cohort experience, sparking business partnerships and knowledge sharing.

We also give you the space and environments to be better in your work, teaching a new skill set that drives innovation and competitiveness.

Find out if you’re eligible at www.springaccelerator.org/eligibility-criteria.

 

For more information, please contact:

Ethiopia
Tigist Araya Getachew: tigist@springaccelerator.org

Kenya
Patricia Jumi: patricia@springaccelerator.org

Rwanda
Grace Mugabekazi: grace@springaccelerator.org

Tanzania
Krupa Patel: krupa@springaccelerator.org

Uganda
Sylvie Kinabo: sylvie@springaccelerator.org

 

About SPRING Accelerator
DFID, USAI, DFAT and Nike Foundation – ­with strategic support from Girl Effect – have partnered to create the business accelerator SPRING based on research showing that girls, when economically empowered, have a unique ability to transform lives and help end the cycle of intergenerational poverty. An estimated 250 million adolescent girls live in poverty worldwide, unable to build assets or safely raise the income needed for a more prosperous life.

SPRING identifies and supports ventures that can bring life-enhancing products and services to this huge population, providing comprehensive business model development and support to its participants including Human-Centred Design prototyping, grants, investment guidance, global and local mentor matching, and access to a pool of experts and legal expertise.

SPRING’s mission is to enable ventures to reach 200,000 girls in eight countries with products and services that enhance their economic empowerment by 2019.