Home Competitions/Awards The MAKE-IT Challenge Fund for Innovation call for Applications

The MAKE-IT Challenge Fund for Innovation call for Applications


Deadline: 07 Feb,2020    Next term Starts:: 01 May,2020



The tech entrepreneurship initiative ‘Make-IT in Africa’, implemented by GIZ, invites innovation hubs and other intermediaries to pitch innovative, market-oriented and sector-specific programs offerings support to African start-ups.

The proposed programme has to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Selected innovation hubs will receive funding of up to €100,000 to implement the project.

GIZ aims at supporting local innovation driven by digital start-ups, enabled either by one organization leveraging local networks or by the collaboration of at least two ecosystem actors. Innovation hubs should apply with projects that leads to local innovation, approaches that innovate existing systems, leapfrog solutions, and take incubation and acceleration work to new levels. “Outside the box”-thinking and approaches are encouraged.

For Make-IT in Africa, it is important that the programme, or elements of programme, are an addition to what already exists in the respective market. It is critical that the proposal clearly explains how the programme adds value to the overall support ecosystem for start-ups.

Eligibility and Criteria

  • Lead applicant based in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria or Rwanda
  • Officially registered NGO or foundation; for-profit company need to partner with a not-for-profit organisation
  • At least two years of business activities and audited accounts
  • At least one finalized acceleration programme implemented
  • At least 20 supported start-ups to date
  • Minimum of 3 team members, including founder team, program manager and accounting
  • Have access to space to host trainings and co-working
  • Programme implemented between May and October 2020
  • Programme approach is new and innovative, adding important components to existing approaches/programmes
  • Activities has not started yet.
  • Grant can be used to co-fund a new activity
  • Grant needs to be used to develop a programme or part of a programme that would not exist without the funding
  • Activity needs to be not for profit; actual costs will be reimbursed
  • Trainers need to have at least 3 years in training and 5 years of experience in linking start-ups with markets and/or investors

Awards and Benefits

Funding to finance projects up the following amounts:

  • Rwanda: one grant, up to 100,000 Euro
  • Ghana: one grant, up to 50,000 Euro
  • Kenya: one grant, up to 100,000 Euro for a project with an agri-tech focus
  • Nigeria: one grant, up to 50,000 Euro
  • Use of the VC4A platform and communication channels for the entrepreneur recruitment campaign, free of charge for selected ESO’s
  • Capacity building for selected teams through webinars and virtual masterclasses
  • Use of various self-learning online resources like Africa Cloud (https://atingi.org/) or VC4A Startup Academy (https://academy.vc4a.com/) and the GIZ Make-IT handbook “Partners in Acceleration” as resources and support around creating a blended learning model (mix of online and offline) as part of your program
  • International visibility through joining the partner network of Make-IT in Africa and access to international networks of corporates, investors, international organisations active in the African startup ecosystem
  • Start-ups part of programme get preferred access to exposure trips and matchmaking facility of Make-IT in Africa
  • Funding might be used to train the organisation’s staff


How To Apply

To apply please click here