1. What is the entry criteria?
You need to be an African entrepreneur with a business proposal that has proof of concept. The business needs to be Africa focused or caters primarily to the African market.
2. What criteria is used in the judging process?
Each entry will be assessed by a minimum of two judges based on the below 5 criteria.
a. Originality of idea
• Is the start-up a new or novel application of existing knowledge/technology/business model to the Africa region in focus ?
• High scores should be given to start-ups that are not clones of well known business models already existing within the African region
b. Strength of business case
• Is the founder able to articulate a strong business case including target market, pain points and how the start-up is differentiated?
• Does the start-up have clear revenue models and path way to profitability?
• High scores should be given to those applications that demonstrate clear business plan to achieving a profitable business
c. Level of product development
• Is the product or idea well developed and ready for investment opportunities?
• Do they have technology patents, rights, brand ownerships or partnerships already in place?
• Is the product already in the market?
• High scores should be given to those applications that demonstrate well developed products or services that are already on sale
d. Level of business opportunity or impact
• What is the level of potential social impact of the idea in Africa?
• What is the potential size of the market share and profitability
• High scores should be given to those applications that demonstrate scalable social impact
e. Team’s ability to execute the idea and other Intangibles
• Does the team have the right combination of passion? insight? experience? qualifications?
• Do secondary aspects of the application strengthen the likelihood of success e.g. founder’s story?
• High scores should be given to those applications that demonstrate passionate teams with significant expertise in the relevant business sector
3. Is there an entry fee to participate in the Accel awards?
There is no entry fee to participate in the entrepreneurship awards. We want to make the awards accessible to as many people as possible on the continent.
4. Do I have to give proof of African origin?
Yes. Finalists will need to show proof of been citizen of an African country. The awards specifically focus on giving African entrepreneurs a platform to showcase their ideas, brands and businesses on an international platform and access to mentorship from leading venture capitalists.
5. Can I trust that my business proposal is safe?
Yes, submitted business information will only be used for the purpose of the awards. The independence of London Business School Africa club ensures that all entries are safe and will not be used without the consent of the entrepreneur or team. All our partners involved in the process are trustworthy and all information submitted will be kept in confidence.
6. Can I submit more than one business idea?
You may submit more than one entry by undertaking a new registering with a different email. Each application will be considered on its own merit. However, if two applications from the same team are shortlisted, the team will have to decide which of the two applications to proceed with. Only one application per finalist (individual or team) will be allowed.
7. I have an idea but no proof of concept, can I participate?
Unfortunately, you cannot participate. One of the qualifying criterions is that the business concept should have proof of concept. This can be website, prototype product or other viable demonstration of the idea.
8. Does the start-up need to be officially incorporated?
No, the company does not need to be incorporated. We want to make the application process as seamless as possible such that the application process is quick and easy.
9. I am based outside the continent but my start-up operates or targets primarily the African market, should I apply?
Yes, you may apply. If the business concept caters for the African market and you can prove African origin, you are eligible to enter.
10. If I am selected, do you help with the visa procedures?
Once you’ve been shortlisted to present at the Africa Business Summit, the club will assist to the best of its efforts to secure a visa for the individual or team. While we cannot guarantee that the visa application will be successful, we aim to give entrepreneurs an opportunity to present their business concepts to our esteemed audience at the Africa Business Summit.
11. Is the prize awarded to the company or the entrepreneur?
The prize is awarded to the business. In the cases where the business is not officially incorporated, the award committee will address how best to award the prize on a case by case basis.
12. I have registered but did not receive any email
ACCELAward.com sends automated emails, depending on your email server this could sometimes be diverted in to your junk email folder. Please check this folder first. If you still don’t see an email try registering using a different email provider or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a manual approval. All popular email service providers i.e. Yahoo, Gmail and Outlook have been tested and should receive an email notification.
13. Can applications be saved and continued at a later stage?
We encourage applicants to fill in the application in one seating (about 30 mins), however partially filled application are saved locally in your computer using cookies and will only be lost if the computer history is cleared.
14. I am unable to save or submit my form
Please contact us at email@example.com with your registration details and error message.