Funding for new tech ventures in Africa hit a record last year as investors look to access its tech-savvy consumer base.

Google has opened applications for the sixth cohort of its African start-up accelerator programme and launched two new developer scholarships in partnership with two other US firms — Pluralsight, an online educator, and Andela, which trains software developers.

Nitin Gajria, MD of Google Sub-Saharan Africa, said during a livestream that no-one is better placed to solve Africa’s challenges than tech entrepreneurs, start-ups and developers on the continent.

“African developers and start-ups play a critical role in the transformation of Africa’s economies, creating new opportunities and paving the way for the economic and social development on the continent that we want to see.”

He believes governments and the private sector need to focus on four key areas to trigger the fourth industrial revolution: physical capital; human capital; technology; and competitiveness.

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