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  • Writer's pictureKelly Alica Liman

Top 15 Startup Accelerators & Incubators in Rwanda

Aspiring to become Africa's startup capital, Rwanda has managed to establish its startup ecosystem in a very short period of time. With the Ministry working on a startup act that is soon to be finalized, combined with increased financing and access to mentoring and technology, Rwanda presented a fantastic opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs to launch their startups in the nation.


In this article, we have compiled a comprehensive list of all incubator and accelerator programs in Rwanda, along with a short overview to help you find a suitable program. The incubators and accelerators in this list have been subdivided into applicability for startups in their 'ideation', 'launch', or 'growth' stages.






accelerators and incubators in Rwanda
accelerators and incubators in Rwanda

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FULL LIST OF STARTUP INCUBATORS AND ACCELERATORS IN RWANDA



Ideation Stage Startup Incubators in Rwanda


Full list of ideation-stage startup incubators in Rwanda:




  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Sector Agnostic

  • Application Link


Originating from Bangladesh, Simcubator is a change-making incubator program that supports social entrepreneurs in enhancing their country's healthcare and education systems. Now, they have a program for Rwandan businesses that promote education and sustainability. They will advise and assist entrepreneurs in growing their impactful startups by offering world-class training, mentorship, workspace, and access to resources.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Sector Agnostic

  • Application Link


Envisage Incubators is a non-profit organization that supports early-stage startups in addressing the challenges and innovating within the agriculture industry. From idea to first revenue and beyond, they provide ambitious entrepreneurs with the tools and assistance they need to implement long-term change. As part of their incubation services, startups will participate in training and workshops for capacity building, 1-on-1 mentoring with experienced entrepreneurs, engineers, and specialists, as well as work on product development through prototyping and continuous testing.





Launch Stage Startup Incubators and Accelerators in Rwanda


Full list of launch stage startup incubators and accelerators in Rwanda:




  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: FinTech

  • Application Link


Rwanda FinTech Hub is an accelerator for Rwandan fintech firms designed to help them grow by addressing their skills, finance, market access, and regulatory concerns. The six-month program will help startups to become investment-ready and scale by providing various capacity-building training in both technical and business skills, opportunities for knowledge sharing and collaborations, and access to market and funding.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Impact

  • Application Link


Dedicated to shaping the continent's future, African Impact Initiative is an organization that provides entrepreneurial programs, community support, and career development training to early innovators in Africa. They offer a number of programs for early-stage founders who are discovering solutions to the continent's challenges, which provide them with the funding, resources, and coaching they require for launch and growth.





  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Impact, UN SDG

  • Application Link


Startup Africa Roadtrip is a non-profit program that promotes and supports cutting-edge social innovation in developing nations and primarily in East Africa. It is a 100% free assistance program that provides local entrepreneurs with the skills and resources they need to execute their enterprises. Through mentorship, training, and connections to investors and industrial partners, they support founders in creating products or services with a high potential for impact on important themes.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Multiple Sectors

  • Application Link


The Innovation Accelerator (iAccelerator) is an acceleration program targeted at youth entrepreneurs to generate innovative solutions in response to various sexual and reproductive health and population development issues. Through the program, they aim to support entrepreneurs in producing creative solutions that will encourage the Rwandan youth in accessing health services and to adopt healthy and safe behaviors. The final top 3 projects will be eligible to receive a 6-month training and mentorship program as well as USD 10,000 seed funding.





  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Multiple Sectors

  • Application Link


VC4A, otherwise known as Venture Capital for Africa, is an online community for entrepreneurs, investors, and partners dedicated to advancing high-impact ventures. Through their platform, startups can engage with various ecosystem players and have access to various startup programs that are available on the site. Startups can also gain access to free online tools, mentorship opportunities, and numerous fundraising opportunities.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Multiple Sectors

  • Application Link


The UN Capital Development Fund is an entity linked to the United Nations Development Programme and part of the UN General Assembly. They assist the 46 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in developing their economies and achieving sustainable growth by providing capital investments by means of grants and loans. Aside from capital, the UNCDF also collaborates with public and private stakeholders to organize a number of challenges and accelerator programs.





  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: SaaS

  • Application Link


Startup Wise Guys is a renowned global acceleration provider with programs all over the globe. In Africa, they run the SaaS Acceleration Africa Program that will offer startups targeted coaching and assistance from mentors and experts to grow their companies. The program is targeted primarily at English-speaking, East, and West African early-stage digital B2B SaaS firms working in the areas of FinTech, AgriTech, and ClimaTech. As part of the program, startups can get up to EUR65,000 funding in exchange for up to 12% equity.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Sector Agnostic

  • Application Link


250STARTUPS is an incubation and acceleration center that supports technology entrepreneurs in becoming investment-ready within 6 months. To help startups transition from incubation to the expansion phase, they offer support in key areas such as market research and customer validation, product development, business model development, legal and financial support, and mentorship assistance.





  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Sector Agnostic

  • Application Link


Pangea is a business accelerator and investment platform that fosters an environment whereby entrepreneurs may connect with investors. The accelerator program is milestone-based and runs for three months, providing entrepreneurs with opportunities to improve their skills, gain access to key networks, and raise funding to realize their business ideas



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Software

  • Application Link


Rwanda Build Program (RWBuild) is a digital cluster for software startups in Rwanda with the ultimate goal of cultivating the culture of building software in Rwanda. Through their program, they assist startups in improving their development and commercial processes to launch their product. The program doesn't guarantee to fund, however, they do have some funding prospects for entrepreneurs and the program is free of charge.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Technology

  • Application Link


DigiCenter, otherwise known as Digital Transformation Center, is a Rwandan-German initiative that aims to catalyze the development of impact-driven digital solutions in Africa. They offer consultancy services and training to local tech startups, as well as a modern working environment to foster innovation and collaboration. Their ecosystem-building and startup support programs include accelerators that provide startups with the opportunity to build and expand their businesses via management training, coaching, and mentorship.





Growth Stage Startup Accelerators in Rwanda


Full list of growth-stage startup accelerators in Rwanda:




  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: Technology

  • Application Link


MEST is a training program for African technology firms that provides incubation as well as seed funding to promising startups. Aspiring entrepreneurs can apply to their fully-funded, 1-year entrepreneurship program focused on business, technology, and communications. Qualified participants can then participate in their incubation program which will provide startups with investment and access to the global tech network that will help them scale globally.



  • Who is it for: Early startup with a team

  • Need to have an idea: Yes

  • Focus: UN SDG

  • Application Link


Accelerate2030 is an initiative for creative enterprises in emerging and developing nations addressing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Their program offers entrepreneurs the support, tools, and network they need to grow and scale their solutions for the world's most critical concerns. Their National Scale-Ready Programs are hosted throughout Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America, in which startups with the highest worldwide scaling potential can participate in their Global Scaling Program.





Closing Thoughts on Startup Incubators and Accelerators in Rwanda


With the formulation of a variety of business-friendly regulations, including the Investment Code, Tech-Enabled Innovation Policy, and Startup Act in place, Rwanda is bound to witness an increase in innovation and startup growth. As the ecosystem reaches its next growth stage, we should be able to see a growth of startup support programs which will hasten the country's digital transition.




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