Invest2Impact is a programme of the Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) of Canada, France, the United Kingdom and United States, in partnership with the MasterCard Foundation, as part of the global 2X Challenge. (What is a DFI? Click here. More about the 2X Challenge: click here.)
Invest2Impact starts with an on-line competition for women-led businesses in Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. Our aim is to be a partner that recognizes and celebrates the power of women entrepreneurs and that helps you to operate as close as possible to your maximum potential.
Through the competition, 100 entrepreneurs will be selected to participate in one or more of the Invest2Impact programmes:
Direct, face-to-face engagement with one or more of the four Invest2Impact financial institutions to review your funding requirements, readiness and business plan – tailored support for access to funding.
Expert advice and support to unlock funding from other SME funders. Leverage Invest2Impact’s expertise, relationships and network to build and promote your business investment case.
A special programme designed for smaller businesses with innovative products or social impact . Receive expert, customised support to develop and implement an African and global crowdfunding campaign.
This programme will fund an all-expenses-paid trip to a major conference, trade show or expo in your industry, in Africa or elsewhere. To maximise the benefit, a mentor will help you prepare your event marketing pack. A great way to build your business profile, grow your network, meet potential customers and put your business on the map.
All 100 selected entrepreneurs will also be part of the 2Xconnect business network – building new relationships and sharing knowledge and opportunity in each country, the East Africa region and internationally.
These are the criteria for businesses to qualify to enter the competition.
Your business must be based (registered and operating in) one (or more) of the following countries: Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda;
Your business may operate in a country/countries outside of the above list but must be majority owned (more than 51%) by at least one woman who is a national of one of the countries listed above.
The competition is open to both small and medium-size businesses. The Invest2Impact sponsors and partners are looking for businesses that require funding in the following categories:
- Funding up to USD100,000
- Funding between USD100,000
- Funding between USD3-million
- Funding for more than USD8-million
If you fall into one of the above categories, we invite you to enter the competition to receive funding readiness and access support.
To enter, a business must have been operating for at least three years, and meet ANY TWO of the following three criteria:
- At least 5 employees;
- Revenues of at least USD50,000 per annum;
- Assets of at least USD50,000.
The business must be minimum 51% owned by women national(s) of one or more of the countries listed above;
was founded by women national(s) of one or more of the countries listed above (even if their current ownership is now less than 51%).
Businesses can enter in any industry sector (subject to the exclusions below).
Businesses which support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are particularly welcome to enter and can score additional points in the entry form.
See https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/ for more information on the SDGs.
Certain businesses are not permitted to enter.