African tech ecosystems are making the same mistake Silicon Valley has in funding

If you read any of my blogs on Africa technology ecosystems, you know I am quite adamant that Africa refuses to become a Silicon Valley lite version.

But it looks like African technology ecosystem funders refuse to learn the lessons of what “not to do” from Silicon Valley:

Mirro-tocracy in my mind aptly describes the funding gap in Silicon Valley, and I going to use it more as I speak on the topic of in equality of funding. It is quite simple, according to a report by Richard Kerby [One of the few black VC’s in the US] of 1,500 venture capitalist 40% of the VC’s surveyed went to either Harvard or Stanford and 70% white which invariable mirrors which startup founders get fund i.e. white male and most likely to have attended Harvard or Stanford

This thing is just like Silicon Valley we are creating an elite group of fundable startups.

. In November I spoke at Africa Arena on the topic of startup investment in Africa here is breakdown of what I said:

  1. over 70% of funding across the continent goes to 5  or so countries namely South Africa, Nigeria , Kenya, Egypt and Ghana 
  2. Of that percentage most of the funding goes to Fintech and ecommerce like startups 
  3. Also there is knack for favoring  startups with one or more non-African founders(mostly from the western world)
  4. And last but not least most of the funded companies are mostly male

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African technology ecosystems have an opportunity to redesign funding in ways in which we fix the clearly broken finding systems of Silicon Valley, but that seems to not be the case

 

I get it, only a small percentage of funding comes to Africa anyways, but that does not mean we cannot create better ways of leveling the playing field for funding?

How do we fix it? A few thought to start with:

-More home grown (Africa) VC’s and Angels

-Supporting foreign VC’s to better understand the ecosystem and not just stick if with what is familiar to them.

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