Startup incubator Nailab invests $25K in East African startups


When  (Nairobi Incubation Lab) opened its doors seven years ago in Kenya, it wanted to be the for Kenya, Nailab CEO Sam Gichuru told me. In order to accomplish that goal, Gichuru realized Nailab would need a lot of money, which it did not have at the time. That’s why it initially began as a co-working space.

“Along the way we realized that the startups we got into the space that actually managed to raise between 10 to $20,000, who are growing, we realized we needed to put together a seed fund,” Gichuru said.

The fund, which invests $25,000 in East African startups, looks for Kenya-based startups with potential to be highly scalable and able to make a social and/or economic impact.

“We do not find startups that are like what you’d find in other parts of the world,” Gichuru said. “That is simply because Africa still has a lot more problems to solve that are quite basic.”


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