Start-ups are no longer the preserve of America alone. Along with the gold rushes during the conquest of the western United States in the 19th century or recently towards China on the dawn of a flamboyant economic renaissance, the “New Frontier” that is Africa is currently crossed by nationals from all regions of the world, trying to invest or embark on the great entrepreneurial adventure and dreaming of accessing the largest emerging market (except China and India) consisting of 300 million consumers.

Many young people who want to create their start-up identify more or less consciously with leaders cited as examples such as Verona Mankou, designer of the first African touchscreen tablet or Aliko Dangote, a businessman who made his fortune in the cement factory. in Nigeria. Yet they are struggling to find investors or a bank likely to invest in their high-potential start-up. Only large structures that have reached the stage of maturity obtain the favor of Anglo-Saxon, Chinese and Gulf investment funds.

Most start-up bosses think they’ve done the hard part by sending their business plans to investors through sites like However, the fundraising process is broken down into several decisive stages, including the “Executive Summary”, the “Pitch” giving the opportunity to present your start-up – which will be the subject of an in-depth study in this article – the Business Plan, due diligence and the signing of the shareholders’ agreement.

Once selected, each entrepreneur tries to convince a group of potential investors through an oral presentation of their start-up project called a “pitch”. The purpose of the pitch is to obtain a second meeting during which the project, via the business plan, is examined in depth, this time with all the technical aspects related to the product or service.

You can own the world’s best innovative project with high growth potential; however a bad presentation would work against you and ruin any prospect of obtaining funds to launch or develop your start-up.

Discover below the 14 key elements of a powerful pitch in front of a potential investor:

1 °) Find out about the investor profile before choosing the one that best suits your start-up

When doing investor research, it is highly recommended that you know your audience well to anticipate questions.

The managers of start-ups who have succeeded in raising funds are those who have investigated the expectations of investors and adapted their speech to their beliefs.

Project leaders should not use the same pitch with all audiences. An investor wishing to finance a project in the field of agriculture in Gabon will not have the same concerns as an investment fund looking for a start-up in the mobile telephony sector in Côte d’Ivoire . On the other hand, some tend to capitalize on the strengths and talents of a team in a start-up, while others seek out a visionary founder.

Do your research and find as much information as possible on the potential investors who will be members of the selection committee or jury. Identify their investment choice criteria, their “philosophy” of intervention in start-ups, the values ​​to which your contact person is attached. Check that each of them has gained extensive operational experience as a business leader or has expertise in other areas.

If you can better understand their underlying certainties, you will be able to adopt the most appropriate discourse to convince them.

Individual investors and partners in venture capital firms also maintain blogs; reading their articles is one way to get to know their point of view. Do not hesitate to search blogs by listing the names of these investors in search engines to learn more about their vision of financing a start-up.

You must also identify the start-ups in which they have been led to invest, know the reasons, take note of the amount of sums invested and the number of “rounds of table”. This will allow you to avoid those who have invested in your direct competitors, which could constitute an obvious conflict of interest.

Some investment funds dedicated to Africa mention their own criteria for selecting a start-up on their website.

Already present in several African markets, notably in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, the French investment company Wendel seeks, for example, to invest for the long term in companies or start-ups belonging to the telephone sectors. mobile, transport, infrastructure, energy or finance, favoring pan-African companies so as not to concentrate the risks on a single country. Likewise, AfricInvest-Tuninvest’s financial strategy consists of taking minority stakes in SMEs or start-ups well established in their local market, showing strong growth potential across the continent. Dutch investor XSML, through its Central Africa SME Fund, provides venture capital to small and medium-sized enterprises, with investments of which 80% of funds are allocated to the DR Congo and 20% to the Central African Republic. Askia Management Partners, an investment company dedicated to start-ups working in ICT, wants to invest primarily in Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Tunisia, Cameroon and Morocco, etc.

All of these strategies speak volumes about the need to research these financiers.


About The Author

CEO AfrikaTech

Comme beaucoup de personnes j’ai connu l’Afrique à travers des stéréotypes : l’Afrique est pauvre, il y a la guerre, famine… Je suis devenu entrepreneur pour briser ces clichés et participer à la construction du continent. J’ai lancé plusieurs entreprises dont Kareea (Formation et développement web), Tutorys (Plate-forme de e-learning), AfrikanFunding (Plate-forme de crowdfunding). Après un échec sur ma startup Tutorys, à cause d’une mauvaise exécution Business, un manque de réseau, pas de mentor, je suis parti 6 mois en immersion dans l’écosystème Tech au Sénégal. J’ai rencontré de nombreux entrepreneurs passionnés, talentueux et déterminés. A mon retour sur Paris je décide de raconter leur histoire en créant le média AfrikaTech. L'objectif est de soutenir les entrepreneurs qui se battent quotidiennement en Afrique en leur offrant la visibilité, les connaissances, le réseautage et les capitaux nécessaires pour réussir. L'Afrique de demain se construit aujourd'hui ensemble. Rejoignez-nous ! LinkedIn:

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