Although Africa does not suffer from a lack of entrepreneurial interest, innovation still faces major challenges. In particular, it’s often difficult for founders to get funding and other needed support when their businesses are in early stages of development. Most funding in Africa goes to lower-risk, later-stage companies, and early-stage African entrepreneurs receive only 8% of total investment dollars compared to 20-25% in other startup-supportive economies.
Founded in 2018 and headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa, Founders Factory Africa is an early-stage tech investor and venture development company that is addressing this need. With an experienced staff of investors and entrepreneurial operators, they invest in and provide a comprehensive suite of individualized, hands-on support and resources to new ventures. Although partnering with companies at very early stages can be higher risk, it is here that access to capital and technical expertise can make the greatest difference in success.
“In Africa, there is an abundance of entrepreneurs with the talent and ability to revolutionize healthcare. At Founders Factory Africa, we’re here to fuel their success and impact as they focus on local solutions to local problems, scaling businesses that positively change the lives of their users. We’re committed to supporting them with everything they need to go further, faster, so that their incredible potential and promise can improve lives across the continent.” - Bongani Sithole, CEO, Founders Factory Africa
Their unique approach and mission alignment made Founders Factory Africa a natural partner to Johnson & Johnson Impact Ventures (JJIV), an impact fund within the Johnson & Johnson Foundation, as they support startups that are positively disrupting healthcare, providing new solutions and addressing health inequities.
The recent JJIV investment exclusively supports the healthcare vertical within Founders Factory Africa to significantly increase access to high-quality care in Africa, which is part of their broader goal to build and scale 100 African startups by 2025.
“In Founders Factory Africa, we saw an opportunity to invest in high-potential entrepreneurs that historically have not received funding. Founders Factory Africa is uniquely positioned to not only identify those entrepreneurs, but actively partner with them on their journey. We are proud to support this team and work with them to help transform the landscape of healthcare innovation in Africa.” - David Higgins, Investment Lead, Johnson & Johnson Impact Ventures