By Oladipupo Mojeed
The search engine giant, Google in collaboration with Co-creation Hub (CcHub) has announced the launch of PitchDrive, a 3-week, 5-city European tech hub tour across London, Amsterdam, Berlin, Zurich and Paris.
According to reports, PitchDrive, from CcHub, will see 15 elite startup founders/tech companies from across Africa explore the world of European startup ecosystems through the eyes of the Google for Entrepreneurs’ partners in each travel destination — where they’d also get to pitch to investors, explore international opportunities and learn about frontier technology markets.
Starting in London on 14th of August 2017, the cohort will visit Google’s Campus London, TQ Amsterdam, Factory Berlin and Impact Hub in Zurich, and culminate at NUMA, Paris.
Upon completion of the tour, the inaugural cohort will have pitched to over 300 investors, with the specific goal of raising over €20m in the three-week period.
Opportunities for investors
This is the first tour of its kind to connect African tech companies with European capital, as the PitchDrive team is aiming to open up the sector to investors who want to build their portfolios to include emerging markets.
African startup founders looking to raise Series A funding and above will be selected by the PitchDrive team to embark on this landmark tour that aims to build stronger networks between European investors and African tech talent.
Applicants will be subjected to a rigorous selection process, and those selected will go on to have their business models scrutinised and analysed by some very shrewd and highly experienced investors at a Demo Day on each stop of the tour.
Bosun Tijani, CcHub founder and CEO admits that it will be tough, but ultimately , he hopes to help secure a number of breakthrough capital deals for those who embark on the.
“This is an incredible opportunity, and applications for just 15 places on the PitchDrive bus, are now welcome,” he said.
PitchDrive will provide all travel, accommodation and visa support, as well mentorship and support from notable tech founders well versed in fundraising, including iROKO Founder and CEO Jason Njoku, Saidah Nash Carter of Reuters, Stephen Newton of Illuminate Africa and David Grunwald of Google for Entrepreneurs.
How to apply
Those looking to apply must be running an Africa-based enterprise, able to demonstrate a minimum of 12 months revenue-generating operations, for at least two years.
Ideally, startups should also have a strong management team who have worked together for at least 12 months and the founding team should own between 30-60% of the business with a high-quality board. Founders must also be available for a three-week period through the summer of 2017.
The PitchDrive team is also looking for companies that are tech-enabled or proprietary/patented tech, a technology that has been validated by large reputable corporate customers (where applicable) and should relate to retail, mobile, financial technology, health or agriculture or have a high differentiation of technology/know-how.
Application closes on the 18th of June.
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