249Startups, Sudan-based innovation hub, announced the official launch of the country’s first startup-focused impact investment fund.
Rhino Investments is 249 Startups’ newest funding vehicle that aims to create an inclusive startup ecosystem for entrepreneurs while creating networks between impact-driven and scalable startups, SMEs, and investors through the latest, most efficient, de-risking investment processes Sudan has to offer.
249Startups is also introducing the Impact Acceleration Programme: a three-month programme that provides business knowledge, customised services, and capital, in exchange for the equity of the startups. The Impact Acceleration programme will target minor ownership in pre-seed to seed-stage companies based in Sudan and will seek to be their active investor with typical cheque sizes of up to $15,000 in addition to a larger ticket size on follow-up investment for a selected number of companies.
“We are not afraid to be a founder’s first investor. Matter of fact, our investors base provides up to $25,000 on follow-up funding after completing the Rhino impact acceleration programme. Through the acceleration programme, we aim to invest a total of $500,000 in 14 companies within the next two years. And it doesn’t stop there, we also aim to create and support over 500 jobs for youth in Sudan,” Ahmed Elmurtada, Managing Partner at 249Startups.
The Impact Acceleration programme’s first cohort will be launched in the first quarter of 2022 with the goal of bridging the funding gap in pre-seed and seed-stage businesses. Moreover, the programme aims to invest in seven post-MVP stage ventures with ticket sizes of up to $30,000 per venture each year in exchange for minor equity, and provide support with capital, talent acquisition, distribution, private sector linkages, customised services, and board nominations.
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