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African startups are invited to apply for the Archipelagos SME Support Programme.

African startups are invited to apply for Archipelagos, a multi-year international collaboration programme aimed at promoting the growth of African SMEs and improving their access to financial markets.

Archipelagos, developed by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), the Italian financial institution for international development cooperation, and supported by the European Commission, will provide access to a targeted capacity-building programme to up to 1,000 SMEs from across the continent.

The program is designed around three major areas: training, mentorship, and networking, and it is delivered using a hybrid model that combines both asynchronous and synchronous components to provide a full and dynamic learning experience.

The Archipelagos digital platform will provide SMEs with access to a wide learning repertoire of online courses, with tailored learning paths based on their unique needs and stage of development. On top of the asynchronous component, webinars will help to make the learning experience more interesting, engaging, and interactive.

In addition to training, SMEs participating in the initiative will receive dedicated support and access to a network of SMEs and investors, allowing them to create crucial business connections, even on a global scale.

At the conclusion of the capacity building course, SMEs that demonstrate the readiness and potential to raise funds in the capital markets will get tailored support and guidance during the fundraising process. The European Commission’s first-loss financial guarantee facility will help them structure novel debt products and receive finance at favorable terms, allowing them to attract other investors.

Interested parties can apply online until June 30, and applications will be assessed on a rolling basis.

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