The Catalyst Fund Collaborates with The Mastercard Foundation and MEST to develop a $4.3M Inclusive Digital Commerce Accelerator in Ghana
The Catalyst Fund, by BFA Global alongside support from Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), and the Mastercard Foundation has launched from the $4.3M Catalyst Fund Inclusive Digital Commerce Accelerator.
The program intends to improve the financial resilience and livelihoods of MSEs throughout Ghana that have been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Catalyst Fund relocated to Ghana and strives to improve the livelihood and financial resilience of MSMEs that are hardest hit by COVID-19 while opening access to digital commerce platforms.
The accelerator will choose and scale 6 digital commerce and innovative companies that will enable MSEs to tap the merits of digital commerce while leveraging the Catalyst Fund’s existing business models. This combines:
A flexible grant capital package totalling US$120,000 per company
Venture capital acceleration
Cohort based work sessions and portfolio meetups accompanied by support from MEST.
Commitment to sharing best practices
Connections with the Catalyst Funds growing network of investors (65+) and Circle of Corporate Innovators
The event will be the first expansion of the Fund beyond fintech and is expected to formally launch during a virtual event where the will make a pitch showcase.
The speakers during the launch are Alex Bram (Hubtel), Albert Biga (Zoobashop), Lexi Novitske (Acuity Venture Partners), Kweku Fleming (MEST scale), and Jane del Ser (BFA global).
The Catalyst Fund MD, Maelis Carraro says, “Through the Inclusive Digital Commerce Accelerator, we aim to impact informal MSEs in Ghana who, particularly in light of the COVID-19 crisis, lack access to a financial safety net and find their livelihoods impacted when physical commerce suffers.
“The Inclusive Digital Commerce Accelerator provides an opportunity to work with Catalyst Fund to support scale-stage ventures which are strategically seeking to better reach and serve informal MSEs, leveraging our local knowledge, networks, and expertise,” said Greg Coussa MEST’s Strategic Director.