The Growth Hub Africa Idea to Innovation (I2I Programme) 2013.

Application Deadline: July 15 2013

Are you an entrepreneur and/or an innovator with a mature idea?

I2I is a programme that is tailored for those entrepreneurs and their start-ups who have already come up with an idea, have validated this idea and want to take it to the next level of developing a product or service and also piloting this to the targeted audience/market.

The GrowthHub is a business incubator and accelerator for early start-ups based in Nairobi Kenya. GrowthHub focuses on committed and ambitious entrepreneurs who have business ideas that solve the many social problems we are facing today in Africa and create impact and furthermore having the potential to grow into profitable business ventures.

The Programme is a living lab; at The GrowthHub bringing together like-minded entrepreneurs together from diverse backgrounds and ideas to work together in the same environment for 16 weeks (4 months). It is a resident programme, filled with working days where specific topics will be discussed every week.

The programme invites 10-12 start–ups with mature ideas to work with the facilitators, mentors, entrepreneurs in residence for 6-8 weeks to evolve these into concrete products and services  and then plan a pilot/test of this to attain a proof of the concept, while collecting enough information to validating key market and customer assumptions.

4-6 start –ups will be selected and provided enough resources to execute their pilot/test over an additional period of 10 weeks.

The structure of the programme will provide them with the tools they need to successfully build and test their products and services into the market. Also looking at the bigger picture and long term plan of how they can be successful.

Culmination of the programme is a presentation of their innovation and the outcome of the pilot/test to a panel of business angels and these teams will receive 5, 000 USD each to do this.

We are looking for innovators targeting the following verticals:

  • Affordable basic services for the poor (Base of the Pyramid)
  • Agriculture, and agriculture technology (with a high level of positive social or environmental impact)
  • Education
  • Energy/environmental sustainability (e.g. green technology, clean technology, sustainable materials, renewable energy, waste management)
  • Financial services for low income populations
  • Healthcare
  • Water and Sanitation
  • Urban Challenges
  • Mobile/ICT tackling all the above

Criteria for Selection;

As an innovator we would like you to have:

  • A mature idea that you have already thought through.
  • Have achieved customer validation and proof of concept of from your targeted audience
  • Want to build a sound product/service and pilot it thereafter
  • You have team members/ or intend to have. We prefer start-ups that are more than one person
  • You and your team members must be working full time on this venture
  • You are a registered for profit company or intend to be

Application process

Fill out the application form provided HERE, the questions asked are for us to get to know more about who you are and what you do. This is a written application and it is not so long.  After receiving the applications we will have face to face interviews with the shortlisted candidates and at a selection conference  carry out further interviews to determine the 10 -12 start-ups.

Key Dates

Activities Start End
Applications Open June 12 2013 July 15 2013
Information Sessions* July  01 2013 July 11 2013
Selection Conference July 20 2013 July 22 2013
Programme Start August 01 2013 September 12 2013
Pilot Pitch Plan September 12 2013 September 15 2013
Pilot Execution Plan September 16 2013 November 21 2013
Pitch Fest –Pilot Outcome November 22 2013 November 22 2013


*There will be four information sessions during the period within which we are accepting applications.


  1. The entrepreneurs and their start-ups will gain a lot of experience not only from the workshops designed by the facilitators but also from the mentors that will be assigned to them
  2. Peer to peer learning , sharing and networking amongst the entrepreneurs themselves in the cohort, as well as those experienced ones whom they will have interactions with in the various activities that will be organised by The GrowthHub.
  3. Opportunity to receive a capital investment of 5,000 USD for your start-up to build a prototype and also test your product /service. Furthermore an opportunity to present your product/service to The GrowthHub partners, investors and supporters.
  4. Access to successful entrepreneurs and speakers who will share their own experiences and networks, who will be attending all the workshops.
  5. Access to free co-working space for the full duration of the programme, where you will meet other like-minded entrepreneurs and direct access to The GrowthHub team.
  6. Dedicated support from The GrowthHub team of experts from Kenya, Denmark and US who will continually help you build your product/service and eventually start-up into a business.
  7. Brand awareness that will be as a result of the different community events, press, outreach and PR efforts that The GrowthHub will be pursuing.
  8. 13 weeks of a lifetime opportunity to actually concentrate and work in an environment with like-minded people building their ventures. Sharing success, frustrations, sleepless nights but also lots of learning and laughter.

If you have any more questions on the Idea to Innovation programme, see FAQs

If you fit the above criteria or know of anyone who fits this criteria and would be interested in participating in this programme, please ask them to APPLY HERE and they can also contact us on [email protected] for more information.

Please note that you will be unable to send in your application in person and hence you need to ensure that you get access to the Internet. In case of difficulties submitting the application, you may send us an email at the following address: [email protected]



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