11 teams of Basque-Kenyan entrepreneurs of the Africa Basque Challenge program compete in Bilbao to develop their startups in Africa and Euskadi


11 teams of Basque-Kenyan entrepreneurs of the Africa Basque Challenge program compete in Bilbao to develop their startups in Africa and Euskadi

Africa Basque Challenge

11 teams of Basque-Kenyan entrepreneurs of the Africa Basque Challenge program compete in Bilbao to develop their startups in Africa and Euskadi

The new startups include, among others: the creation of a technological company to connect farmers and buyers; a company to produce construction materials made from coconut waste, etc.



Bizkaia through its department of Economic Promotion and the Basque Agency for Development Cooperation of the Basque Government. Its objective: to develop socio-business initiatives that promote the development of rural communities and contribute to reducing inequalities in Kenya and Euskadi.

The 11 teams

To this end, last September the Africa Basque Challenge program was launched, a pioneering program at the state and European level to encourage young entrepreneurs to launch their project in Africa. After a first phase developed in Kenya in November, where the eleven teams and the 47 participants had workshops, talks and visits to companies of interest in the digital and agroindustrial field, this second phase was developed in Bilbao. In this phase, the entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs have done training in financing and business plans, with the aim of concluding the entrepreneurship proposal, which was presented last Friday in a final event where a jury chose the winning projects.

In the Yimby room (Ercilla, 24) the 11 teams made up of 47 Basque-African entrepreneurs aged between 18 and 45, and where 70% are under 25 years old, defended their proposal in front of a jury composed of investors and funds of investment with impact, as well as entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs, who chose the winning startups.

Projects range from the creation of a circular economy technology company to track agricultural products and connect farmers and buyers, A2W; a company to produce sustainable construction materials made from coconut waste, HOCO; an initiative to empower rural women through the value of cassava; a company that plans a digital platform to encourage sustainable tourism; a renewable energy system of eco-engines, recharged by solar panels; sustainable tourism through Glamping's first project in Euskadi and Kenya; an initiative to promote African fashion by empowering rural women, VAA; a plan to ensure that women and girls in rural areas have access to safe and reusable sanitary napkins; a platform for access to financing small entrepreneurship through blockchain, AMTANI; an online platform to connect the population with skilled manual workers such as carpenters, electricians, masons etc ...

The best 4 chosen startups will have a total cash prize of 15,000 euros to execute the project as well as an accompanying digital acceleration carried out by the BRIDGE FOR BILLIONS platform in collaboration with the team of MONDRAGON TEAM ACADEMY.


The program first arose from a need: to reduce the inequalities that occur in Africa between the countryside and the cities and secondly, from an opportunity: Africa is a continent of great opportunities to undertake and launch new projects due to the needs of the continent in the most diverse areas, which makes it a very attractive territory from a business and social point of view. And from the union of both facts arises the social program that MONDRAGON TEAM ACADEMY has decided to set in motion, which is born with a permanent vocation. A program with which the university wants to support the growth and wealth of the country by studying and promoting co-created social initiatives that help the country to advance in co-development, contributing to economic development with a social base.

The implementation of this program of Basque-African collaboration represents the first steps of the international entrepreneurship network of Mondragon Unibertsitatea in the African continent and leaves the door open to future avenues of collaboration in Africa (the only continent, together with Oceania in the that this entrepreneurship network is not present).


The MONDRAGON TEAM ACADEMY is the International Entrepreneurship Network created in 2008 within the Business Faculty of Mondragon Unibertsitatea. A decade after its creation, this network dedicated to training entrepreneurship and promoting it globally, is present on three continents and belongs to it 1,300 entrepreneurs from around the world. Since it was launched, Mondragon Team Academy has trained young people from diverse backgrounds in the field of entrepreneurship through undergraduate (LEINN) and postgraduate training programs (MINN, TEAMINN and other programs) aimed, precisely, at boosting the spirit entrepreneur under the prism of teamwork and cooperative values.

In this time, MONDRAGON TEAM ACADEMY has spread to Europe, Asia and America. Today, the network is present in laboratories operating in Irún, Bilbao, Oñati, Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Queretaro (Mexico), Seoul (Korea), Pune (India) and Shanghai (China).

Both MONDRAGON TEAM ACADEMY and BRIDGE FOR BILLIONS are social entrepreneurship initiatives that are part of the global network ASHOKA, the most important network of social entrepreneurs in the world.