Africa’s Booming Tech Ecosystem and Growing Talent Pool
Africa’s tech ecosystem has witnessed significant growth, fueled by both local and foreign investments. The continent is home to a burgeoning talent pool, including software developers, UI/UX designers, and engineers, who are in high demand both locally and internationally. To cater to this demand, talent-matching platforms like Andela, GOMYCODE, AltSchool, and Decagon have emerged across Africa.
Propel’s Mission to Derisk Hiring Remote Talent from Emerging Markets
Propel, a startup based in Lagos and Berlin, aims to establish sustainable talent pipelines for communities and help global companies mitigate risks associated with hiring remote talent from emerging markets, with a specific focus on Africa. Recently, the company secured €2.5 million in seed investment led by No Such Ventures, with participation from APX, Golden Egg Check, and Future of Learning Fund.
The Power of Communities in Building Tech Ecosystems
Recognizing that communities are the foundation of any tech ecosystem, especially in emerging markets, Propel shifted its focus to community building. The startup observed that most tech communities excel in upskilling and building talent but struggle with converting these skills into job opportunities. Propel provides a last-mile infrastructure that connects tech talent from these communities to global companies seeking diverse.
Propel’s Community-as-a-Service Model and Benefits for Tech
Propel operates a “community-as-a-service” model, offering a talent pipeline from various tech communities to global companies. The startup facilitates connections between companies driven by diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) mandates and specific job roles within these communities. Tech talent, in addition to job opportunities, can access benefits such as healthcare, workstation access, and eventually financial services like loans and asset financing through Propel’s partnerships with service providers.
Expanding Reach and Revenue Generation for Communities
Currently serving over 100 tech communities across 15 African countries, Propel aims to expand its ecosystem to 500 communities with 1 million members by 2024. The startup generates revenue through hiring and placement fees, with a fraction of the revenue allocated to the respective communities. By creating new financial revenue streams, Propel empowers communities to grow and reduce dependence on grants and sponsorships.
Future Plans and Investor Support
With a team spread across multiple locations, Propel has successfully placed over 550 individuals in job roles across different countries. The company has raised over €3 million in funding, including support from Google Black Founders in Europe.
Propel plans to scale its community platform, introduce new client offerings, and deepen its network of communities. No Such Ventures, one of the investors, lauds Propel’s community-focused approach and expresses excitement about partnering with them on their growth journey in the Future of Work category.