About the Program
Village Capital, with the support of International Finance Corporation (IFC), is launching an investment readiness program for Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Turkey-based startups that are tackling the region’s most pressing sustainability challenges.
Entrepreneurs will benefit from Village Capital’s award-winning curriculum, intensive feedback from their peers, and connections and one-on-one mentorship with potential customers, investors and industry experts. We’re encouraging applications from entrepreneurs building high-growth, scalable solutions focused on the following regional challenges:
PLANET: The MENA region is experiencing worsening extreme heat, drought and aridity conditions exacerbated by climate change. We’re looking for innovation that improves the resilience of our planet, with a focus on sustainable sourcing, sustainable food systems, and regenerative farming practices.
PEOPLE: COVID-19 has intensified regional food and housing insecurity, especially for underserved and rural populations. We’re looking for innovation that improves the health and wellness of underserved communities with a focus on the core tenets of life such as access to food, housing, social wellbeing and health and wellness, including mental healthcare.
Eligible startups must have:
For-profit market-based solution that tackles a sustainability challenge in MENA or Turkey
Operations in or have the ability to expand business to the MENA or Turkish market
Have a minimum viable product (MVP), and raised less than $1M in equity
Have at least one full-time founder based in the MENA or Turkey
Have meaningful customer or business validation (not limited to revenue, can also be successful pilot studies, number of users, and/or strategic partnerships)
Benefits startups will receive:
Two (2) peer selected companies are eligible for grants of USD 20,000 each
Ability to network and receive mentorship from potential strategic partners, customers, and founders
Ability to network and receive mentorship from MENA and Turkey-based investors
Diverse and inclusive network of mentors and founders
Access to an investment analyst who will coach you 1:1 on building a financial model, identifying unit economics, and on using financial metrics to drive both the business and investor diligence
Participate in mock board meetings with mentors and investors that can help your organization scale
Exposure on Village Capital’s program website and other communications collateral
Sustainability MENA 2021 will host virtual two cohorts that run from June-August 2021. Exact workshop dates to be announced. The deadline to apply to both cohorts is March 30.
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Common FAQs we receive from startups:
What is the main goal of the program? The program is designed to help startups identify early milestones and prepare for your next round of capital (if relevant). In short, through in-person workshops, we deliver a targeted, award-winning curriculum and provide countless connections to prepare startups for growth.
Do you take equity in your programs? No. Village Capital is structured as a non-profit and cannot take equity.
For more detailed responses to these and more questions. Please click here.