FAQPlease read the following about think to learn if the think incubator is right for your start-up team.
Q: Who is eligible to apply?
A: To be considered, teams must demonstrate the following characteristics:
- They are technology start-ups or projects in their initial phase of development
- The products and/or services can be launched within 12 months of joining the incubator
- They use technology in an innovative way
- They have an idea that could be scaled across Africa or Latin America
- They have fully committed, ambitious, creative and passionate founders who have market vision
- Applicants do not need to be Rwandan or African nationals to apply. think accepts applications from all over the world from companies that want to first launch their products in Africa.
A: think seeks companies that can also meet the following requirements:
- Each team must bring between 2-4 members to Rwanda for the 6-mo incubation period
- All founders agree to work full-time for their companies in the incubator
- Must register their company in Rwanda
- Teams that do not own a residence permit for Rwanda will need to apply for visas independently. Think will not be responsible for the authorisation and permits required by companies and individuals.
- Must open a bank account in Rwanda
- All founders and companies will accept the Terms and Conditions of the programme and all contractual agreements signed prior to the start of and during the course of the programme.
A: Inital investment of $15,000 USD is guaranteed for each company that joins the incubator. These funds can be used for business expenses or for founder living expenses for the time that they are in Kigali. The cost of moving to Kigali to be in the incubator, for example, could be one buisness expense that provides an opportunity for the entreprenuers to focus 100% on their company. Travel and living costs are the responsibility of the start-up team, and this initial investment is intended to alleviate the need for founders to raise their living expenses elsewhere, but can also be used for core expenses in company development.
Q: Is seed investment guaranteed in my company?
A: Yes, an investment of $15,000 USD will be provided to all selected teams in exchange for 10% equity stake. Additional funding may be awarded at the end of the incubator dependent on the investment committee. As mentioned above, the uses of this funding is intended to grow the business and support the team during the incubation period.
Q: I just have an idea, can I still apply?
A: We are looking for companies that are able to be market-ready and looking to scale within 12 months.
If you have an idea that you can develop and launch in this timeframe, you are eligible to apply.
Q: How do I apply?
A: Apply online at www.think.rw/apply.
- Deadlines: applications are due by midnight in Rwanda on 15 August 2014. The application deadlines for the second intake will be announced on the think website at a later date.
- Application format: applications can only be submitted through the online form.
- Processing of data: Individuals and companies submitting an application grant their consent for the data obtained through their participation to be processed and used generally by think and Millicom International.
- Applications must be submitted in English.
- Incomplete applications will not be considered
A: No, each founder or founding team many only submit one application per intake. Individuals or companies submitting more than one application will have all their applications removed from the process. We want to know that you are 100% behind the idea that you are submitting. Submit your best!
Q: What is the review and selection process?
A: Following the closing of the applications, the think team will assess all applications and will short list 20 companies for review by the Selection Committee. The finalists will then be forwarded to an Investment Committee for review and decision. During this phase, the think team may ask shortlisted applicants for additional information on their project.
Q: When will I know if my team is selected?
A: A maximum of 5 companies will be selected to join the think incubator’s first in-take in mid-September.
These companies will be notified in late August, and selected companies will be presented with final contracts to review and sign before joining the think incubator in Rwanda in mid-September. Before beginning the incubation process and joining the think incubator, each winner will be required to sign various legal documents.
Q: Why Rwanda?
A: The think incubator is pleased to launch in Kigali, Rwanda, a city fast becoming known for its support of the ICT sector. Rwanda has several advantages to registering a business with the Rwanda Development Board, taking less than 6 hours to register a company. Rwanda ranks among the best countries in the annual Ease of Doing Business Survey of the World Bank, and the country is rolling out high-speed internet, and other technology infrastructre programs that make this a great test ground for any new company that seeks Africa as it's primary market.