Iceaddis held an event titled “How to Raise Money for Your Startup” on Wednesday March 16, 2016 presented by Eric Osiakwan. Eric is a digital native with fifteen years of ICT industry leadership across Africa and the world. He currently serves on the board of Kuzima, VC4Africa, Seed Engine, Appfrica and other startups and startup accelerators. He has been a consultant in internationally pertinent organizations like the World Bank, UNDP and USAID. He is also a fellow of TED Global, University of Maryland and Stanford University; an affiliate of Media Lab at MIT and visiting fellow at the Berkman Center, Harvard University.
In his presentation he gave feedback to almost every audience in response to their explanation about their projects briefly. He proceeded to clarifying how to be economically healthy.
The sector opportunity that is hip is High-Tech since Africa’s mobile revolution offers attractive returns and will continue to do so for a longer period of time in the future. This is how Africa’s youthful population who are digital natives shifted their paradigm from seekers of jobs to creators of startups and SMEs. Some of the recent African High-Tech successes are Jumia, Takealot, Woothemes, ParcelNinja and Weza Tele which are worth ranging from 1.7 to 150 million USD.
The stages a startup holder should keep in mind while trying to raise money are preparation of documents, approaching investors and then engaging through follow ups.
One needs to understand the environment he/she intends to use a product on, find a co-founder who knows about the industry or software and answer some questions like “why invest in your invention? Why does yours stand out? How does it make money?”
Note that the venture capitalists target commercially attractive, unique product and a quality execution time. In an interaction held with stockholders an individual should be flexible, passionate, persuasive but not desperate. Leaving some money on the table is also a wise tactic.
It is strongly advised to develop the skills including but not limited to innovation, strategic planning, project management and fundraising.