A support and entrepreneurship program for young Tunisians

With the aim of strengthening the employability of young people and supporting them in the development of entrepreneurship and the creation of startups, Wiki Startup(1) organized the closing ceremony of its Startup Nest(2) program on December 15, 2022. : Demo Day.

The result of collaboration between Wiki Start Up, the NGO Spark(3) and UGFS NA, “Startup Nest” is an acceleration program and personalized support for young project leaders in structuring and managing their projects, training their teams , technical support and mentoring. This program is funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

After a rich and uplifting 2021 edition, where 14 selected startups went through a sectoral incubation phase through comprehensive and personalized support oriented to various courses and training activities, the program has now gained momentum. From an incubation program, we are now moving into a pre-acceleration phase.

For its new 2022 edition, the program is renewed and includes new components in its offer, in order to better respond to the specific needs of ambitious young entrepreneurs who want to take advantage of this rare opportunity to find their way to success.

Thus, within the scope of the programming of this 2022 edition, 14 startups, of the 206 applications received, were selected by a rigorous and competent jury of specialists. The winning startups demonstrated their projects in the presence of the program’s main investors and partners.

Eight sectors of activity concerned

While in the previous edition only 2 areas were covered, this year the program was extended to 8 activity sectors with technology-based solutions. Namely Healthtech, Mobility, Agritech, Travel Technology, GIG Economy, Art, Booking and SaaS.

Startup Nest offers a pre-accelerator program fully dedicated to technology development across all sectors combined and offers numerous perks to winners.

The selected startups thus benefit from training provided by around thirty specialists commissioned by Wiki Startup. Each pre-acceleration cycle lasts 4 months and consists of 19 common training sessions, 10 individual support sessions per startup and 2 expert challenge events.

Even better, startups can offer more targeted training. And you can even bring experts to teach your training, with exclusive funding from Wiki Startup.

It should be noted that among the 14 startups selected, seven will be chosen by the UGFS-NA(4) investment committee and will benefit from an investment ticket of between 50 and 150 thousand dinars.

There are many other advantages, including logistical support for projects in the regions, promotion of women entrepreneurs, accelerated one-to-one support with a common part for cross-cutting themes, a business voucher of DT 2500 per startup (exhibitions, purchase of equipment , services), $5,000 AWS credits good for 2 years, one year of $1,500 worth of AWS technical assistance, not including support for labeling and…

Ultimately, this program undoubtedly contributes to reducing the unemployment rate among young Tunisians and encourages private sector development through targeted support and better access to finance and markets, promises for the creation of promising SMEs.

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(1) The first private incubator launched in Tunisia, Wiki Startup has been offering services to entrepreneurs and investors since 2011. It promotes the creation of innovative start-ups, offering a complete innovation-oriented ecosystem and facilitating their access to expertise, specific development tools business, financing and an international professional network.

WSU offers a range of services ranging from support in creating spin-offs and project management to promoting research results, including incubating and accelerating startups. WSU is responsible for implementing these essential elements: project structuring and management, team building, technical support and personalized mentoring, fundraising support, etc.

(2) Startup Nest is a pre-acceleration program dedicated to accompanying and supporting innovative project leaders. For its new edition, the program is Tech-oriented and targeted at project leaders for specific, personalized pre-acceleration.

(3) Spark contributes to the development of higher education and entrepreneurship to empower ambitious young people and give them the means to guide their societies towards prosperity. Spark Tunisia works to reduce unemployment among Tunisian youth by encouraging private sector development through entrepreneurship training and support for SMEs.

(4) Created in November 2008, UGFS-NA (United Gulf Financial Services-North Africa), a subsidiary of the Kuwaiti group Kuwait Projects Company, is an asset management company. It is a leader in Tunisian startup finance and contributes greatly to promoting the startup ecosystem and innovation. The total assets under management of UGFS-NA exceeds 150 million dinars. To date, the company has financed more than 110 projects in different sectors.

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