Entrepreneurs throughout Africa are facing remarkable challenges as they build and grow innovative startups. As startups scale, they need to have specific skills and expertise on their teams to tackle specific issues, but with limited hiring options in ultra-competitive markets, startups face a “talent gap” between the skills they need to hire and the skills they are able to access.
In order for entrepreneurship ecosystems across the continent to keep thriving, solving this talent gap is crucial. 75% of funded, early-stage companies in emerging markets say their inability to access the talent they need will have a high or critical impact on their growth . Whereas all other challenges such as fundraising, logistics, regulations get more manageable for entrepreneurs as their startups mature, hiring talent is the only challenge that gets increasingly difficult.
Solving the talent gap will require both long-term and short term solutions. Long-term solutions will systematically solve the reasons why this talent gap exist, such as improving education, increasing skills development programs, and developing the entrepreneurial ecosystem. But long-term solutions take time, and today’s entrepreneurs need solutions now.
By connecting leading technology and management expertise from the US tech sector with high-growth ventures on the continent for short-term, high-impact projects, they are unlocking African startups’ capacity for growth and playing our part to fill the talent gap.
The reality is that entrepreneurial expertise is not evenly distributed around the world… yet.