TLcom Capital, an Africa-focused venture capital firm, has publicly announced the 2021 Africa Tech Female Founder Summit. On Wednesday, October 13th, 2021, a virtual event will be conducted.
Julia Gillard, former Prime Minister of Australia and current Chair of Andela, will lead the keynote session, discussing how founders should think about forming and working with boards from early-stage growth to scale.
TLcom has opened applications for female tech founders from Africa and the Diaspora to attend this year’s virtual summit, which will also feature female C-Suite executives from Africa’s leading tech startups, such as Desiree Craig of uLesson, Mayokun Fadeyibi of Autochek, Kristen Kelly of Terragon, and Susan Kiama of Twiga Foods.
The third Female Founder Summit, themed “Board and C-Suite Matters — Counsel, Coach, and Collaborate,” will provide professional insights on how to develop and leverage a senior team and board to achieve effective execution and growth. The summit’s goal is to establish an even larger community of African female tech innovators who can assist one another as they grow their enterprises.
Julia Gillard’s speech will be followed by an open Q&A session with attendees, as well as a panel discussion hosted by Eloho Omame, co-founder of FirstCheck Africa, on how to attract, motivate, and retain high-quality senior personnel.
“Over the last 18 months, African tech has broken into a completely new threshold of investment activity, and as the ecosystem continues to expand, founders are being exposed to an entirely new set of problems,” says Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner at TLcom Capital, speaking at the event.
According to our interactions with entrepreneurs in our network, the most important of these concerns is putting together a core team, both above and below a founder, and ensuring that everyone is working in the organization’s best interests.
If we want our industry to continue on its current path, we must enable founders to successfully execute these processes, both in terms of developing a more thoughtful C-Level hiring strategy and effectively engaging with their boards to amplify the value-generating process for their companies.”
Due to the global pandemic, TLcom’s 2020 Female Founder Summit was hosted virtually, with over 100 tech female entrepreneurs and executives from throughout Africa uniting to experience the value of networking, learning, and being a resource to one another.
Local networking cocktail events in Nairobi and Lagos have been held in conjunction with the virtual conference in 2021.
“While the evolution of a board may bring a new experience for founders throughout African tech, we cannot deny that there are fundamental distinctions in how female entrepreneurs are treated in these settings,” Andreata Muforo, Partner at TLcom Capital, adds. Regardless of their position, women in leadership must deal with damaging assumptions and biases, but a strong and supportive network may make a tremendous impact on this journey.
This is why the Female Founder Summit is so important: no one understands our experiences like other women, and we’re thrilled to have people like Julia and our outstanding panelists who can not only relate to our participants but also give expert tactics for navigating these spaces.”
TLcom’s TIDE Africa Fund, one of the most active funds in Sub-Saharan Africa, has a 50% female leadership team and has actively promoted female founders not only through its annual summit but also through recent investments in female-led firms such as Okra and Pula during the last 18 months.
After Andela’s $200 million Series E round valued the company at $1.5 billion, the fund added its first unicorn to its portfolio.
TLcom now manages roughly $200 million in commitments and owns eleven African businesses, including Andela, Ajua, Autochek, Ilara Health, Kobo360, Okra, Pula, Shara, Terragon Group, Twiga Foods, and uLesson.
The business invests throughout all stages of the venture capital cycle and across a wide range of industries, including agriculture, education, data analytics, and logistics, and has offices in Kenya and Nigeria.