Founded in 2021 by a small team of young investors, ecosystem builders and tech founders, Dream VC has grown into a thriving community, spanning over 12 countries and growing with each cohort, striving to democratize access and understanding the venture capital space for professionals on the continent and among the diaspora.
The institute is fully remote and celebrating its return to the public arena by launching 2x new programs, aiming to train over 50+ Future Investors for the continent.
Africa’s economic growth has accelerated considerably in recent years and is attracting increasing interest from international investors.
However, there is a huge gap between “local financing solutions” and financing “local startups” in almost all 54 markets in Africa.
Most of the investors currently active on the continent are foreign, led by North American and European investors.
There are exceptions to this, such as Future Africa, created by Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, co-founder of Andela and former CEO of Flutterwave. More funds are being actively formed as startup investing slowly becomes mainstream.
This is where Dream VC sees itself plugging in, teaching fellows an immersive 0-100 knowledge acceleration of the VC space, covering everything from business sourcing and due diligence, to the various ways in which VCs can add value and support companies throughout their investment journey, exploring complicated topics like syndication, angel and VC investing and even the legality of establishing VC funds or angel groups to invest in startups African.
For 2022, Dream VC returns with 2 programs equipped with an impressive 500h+ of content, and more than triple the contact hours fellows get with Dream VC staff.
The first program, Engage in venture capital, will take place over 14 weeks from June 2022 to September 2022 and is an intensive basic VC course for young professionals with less than five years of full-time work experience.
Fellows who participate in the Dream VC launch in VC will have access to weekly live and recorded training sessions and project assignments that mimic real work performed by VC analysts and associates.
Fellows will also participate in engaging workshops, interact with real Africa-focused venture capitalist analysts and associates in relaxed networking mixers, and benefit from comprehensive career development modules specifically on how to break into the industry. venture capital.
Finally, Launch into VC Fellows will have access to a dedicated mentorship network through a buddy system that matches incoming LIVC Fellows with former Dream VC graduates, allowing new cohorts to foster connections, build connections and overcome existing challenges in space.
The second program, Investor Acceleratoraims to help launch or accelerate the seasoned careers of experienced operators, founders, working professionals and passionate Africans interested in catapulting themselves into the world of venture capital investment as investors, advisors in startup or ecosystem builders.
This rigorous and immersive program will be launched in June 2022 simultaneously with the Launch into VC program but will run for 20 weeks until the end of October 2022.
Fellows who participate in the Investor Accelerator will receive active instruction, with several live sessions each week, taking place in the evenings and on weekends to engage fellows.
As a much larger and more intensive programme, this promises over 800 hours of content, spread across strategic block-based learning and complemented by a range of panels with top industry leaders such as GPs and executives of many venture capital firms actively investing in or based in African markets.
Investor Accelerator Fellows will also be able to hone their investment skills by reviewing active deals, writing investment notes, and presenting them monthly at a mock investment committee meeting.
Although a young company with only one inaugural program under its belt, the exchange has an impressive track record with resounding success.
More than 90% of fellows graduating from the inaugural program went into venture capital; with some joining new and established companies such as Ajim Capital, Akribos Capital, LoftyInc Wennovate, Oui Capital and Lateral Capital – while others are busy writing checks as angels or setting up their own syndicates and funds in emerging ecosystems like Mozambique, Ivory Coast, Rwanda and others.
There is a plethora of venture capital exchanges in places like the United States and Europe that offer solutions and support for budding investors.
These opportunities are crucial stepping stones into venture capital, which is a notoriously difficult industry to break into, with less than 10,000 VCs globally. At the same time, venture capital-backed and venture-backed startups support more than 100 million jobs (12m+ in the US alone).
This is not yet the case in Africa, and navigating the African startup and investment landscape is very difficult without local context and support on the ground. Despite the creation of a collection of large venture capital-backed companies over the past 3-5 years, Africa still has only
The lack of seed funding and scarcity of venture capital funds investing across the continent are key to this. Traditionally, if an individual doesn’t have the network, the access, the track record, or doesn’t know how to “hack the competition”, the idea of breaking into VC may seem like a pipe dream.
“Ultimately, working in countries like Nigeria or Kenya, founders across the continent often face major hurdles – and there is still a lot to change in the perception of investing or creating startups in Africa.
Investors need to be much more active and add much more value than money to create sustainable and scalable businesses. And that cannot be done without including and enabling local leaders to be more active in the VC space,” adds Cindy, co-founder and program director of Dream VC.
While international interest now puts African startups in the spotlight, there are still very few support systems for aspiring local investors and opportunities for working professionals to break into venture capital on the continent.
Dream VC exists to change that and has ambitious plans to enable the next wave of aspiring investors by building communities, educational infrastructure and the environment to thrive and add maximum value to startups across multiple ecosystems of African startups.
Applications for both programs will go live on March 8 and will be processed on a rolling basis until the final deadline of May 1, 2022 at 23:59 GMT.
the Getting into venture capital The exchange also specifically has an early bird deadline of April 1, 2022 at 23:59 GMT in addition to the final deadline of May 1. Interested applicants can learn more about the two program applications here.
Programs are expected to be extremely competitive, so potential scholarship recipients are strongly encouraged to apply early.
Although Dream VC’s core programs are paid, several generous scholarships are available, so highly motivated candidates in need of financial support are still strongly encouraged to apply.
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