Programme Spotlight: The Founder Academy

Turn your startup dreams into a reality.

3-month intensive support program.
This fully-sponsored programme includes:
    • Pitch deck and business plan templates
    • Live masterclasses and fireside chats with experts
    • Tools to validate, develop, and launch your idea or prototype
    • Vibrant community of peers from across Africa for networking and support
    • Potential access to funding from ALX Ventures venture fund
  • Duration
    12 Weeks
  • Commitment
    15-20 hours/week, online or hybrid
  • Next Cohort
    July 2024
  • Application Deadline
    15 March 2024

12 Weeks


15-20 hours/week, online or hybrid

Next Cohort

July 2024

Application Deadline

15 March 2024

What is the Founder Academy?

The Founder Academy is a 3-month program designed to help you kickstart your startup founder journey. The programme features workshops with experts, video tutorials delivered by founders from across Africa, fireside chats with experienced startup operators and investors, office hours sessions, and weekly deliverables to keep you focused and progressing towards launching your Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and securing your first users.

Once you’ve graduated from our Founder Academy, you’ll become eligible to apply to our Accelerator program that prepares you to become investment-ready and will also be potentially considered for investment from our upcoming ALX Ventures Fund.

“The Founder Academy has been very useful and has played a big role in my growth and mindset in terms of my business and the ability to push forward and make my dream a reality.”

Deborah Falope

Founder of AquaTrack and Graduate of the Founder Academy

Who Should Enrol In The Founder Academy?

The Founder Academy is perfect for new or aspiring entrepreneurs who are ready to do hard things and solve local and global challenges through business. Read some of the profiles from past Founder Academy graduates.

Deborah F.
    • Age: 22
    • Country: Nigeria
    • Education: ALX Software Engineering Program
    • Goal: To digitize fish farm management
Mamadou D.
    • Age: 21
    • Country: Guinea
    • Education: Bachelors, Environmental Sustainability
    • Goal: To make plastic recycling fun and rewarding
Ifeoluwa W.
    • Age: 32
    • Country: Nigeria
    • Education: PhD in Energy Systems Engineering
    • Goal: To restore trust in social commerce
Given T.
    • Age: 22
    • Country: Tanzania
    • Education: Bachelors, Business Administration
    • Goal: To make it easier to access your own health data

Go From Idea To Impact In 3 Months

Week 0

You will join a welcome call, sign into our learning platform, engage with peers in the program, and prepare to begin your journey.

Weeks 1-4

During the “Think” sprint, you will be challenged to reflect on your motivations, begin market research and identify a business model.

Weeks 5-8

During the “Build” sprint, you will learn how to rapidly develop a prototype, seek user feedback, and leverage data and AI to launch your Minimum Viable Product (MVP).

Weeks 9-12

During the “Launch” sprint, you will learn how to create a sales strategy, begin sourcing a pipeline of early users, establish an operational plan and budget, and prepare a pitch deck.

Week 13

During “Demo Day”, you will pitch to prospective customers and investors, and compete for cash prizes and investments.


Following successful completion of the Founder Academy, you will receive a certificate of completion and receive support in applying to our Accelerator program.

Get Connected to Our Global Ecosystem

    A network of global accelerators, investors and corporates await top performing graduates from our programs.

Learn Key Skills For Success in Entrepreneurship

All Fees Waived

Our partnerships allow us to offer eligible candidates access to sponsored world-class training with programme costs waived.

For accepted Founder Academy learners, we have also waived the one-time administration fee to ensure as many people as possible have access to support in launching their own startup.


Please ask LEA our Learning Experience Assistant for more information and answers to any additional questions.

ALX Ventures secures the opportunity to invest in its startups launched during the Founder Academy but does not guarantee that it does. ALX Ventures will stay in touch with graduates and will evaluate potential investments based on a comprehensive set of criteria that reflect the startup’s current performance, growth potential, market opportunity, team capability, and alignment with ALX Ventures’ strategic interests.

Selection Criteria & Requirements

  • Aged 18-34
  • Of African origin
  • Want to explore entrepreneurship as a career path
  • Ready to commit 15 hours per week towards this 3-month program
  • Haven’t raised significant funding or revenue yet
  • Application submitted before Cohort deadline
  • Agree to the Founder Academy Terms and Conditions

To enrol in the Founder Academy, you do not need to already have a business or even a specific idea yet, but it’s ok if you do. The Founder Academy programme experience is designed to enable you to explore challenges and business models to identify a suitable business to develop or refine.

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