Nigerian ed-tech startup AltSchool Africa has raised a US$1 million pre-seed funding round as it plans to solve the lingering problem of talent shortage in the tech ecosystem with its flexible educational programme.
Founded last year by Adewale Yusuf and Sultan Akintade, who are also co-founders of another Nigerian ed-tech company TalentQL, AltSchool aims to equip Africans with in-demand tech and employability skills to help them launch their careers.
“After the launch of TalentQL, we noticed that there was very high demand and very little supply. And even with the supply, there was a huge employability gap. Although talents possessed good technical skills, they lacked some necessary foundational skills required to make the mark. AltSchool Africa emerged to address these needs,” Akintunde said.
Four months since its launch, AltSchool Africa has had over 8,000 applicants across 20 different countries to its School of Engineering, with plans to begin the first cohort in April 2022. To support its growth, it has now raised a US$1 million pre-seed round from institutional investors such as Voltron Capital, NestCoin, Odba VC, and Pledges.
The round also saw participation from local investors such as Olugbenga Agboola of Flutterwave, Shola Akinlade of Paystack, Dr. Ola Brown, and entertainment personalities, Folarin ‘Falz’ Falana and Akitoye Balogun, popularly known as ‘Ajebutter22’.
This funding will be used to strengthen the startup’s team and upgrade existing infrastructure. Product-wise, AltSchool Africa has plans in place to expand on its current programmes, as it aims to meet the demand from millions of Africans that will need training or retraining in tech skills.
“We have a unique vision to build world-class tech talents who will make a huge impact in the tech talent market. Tech skills are a big determinant of the future economy. We are leading a paradigm shift, setting Africa on the path to technological transformation. It’s the age of the digital revolution and we are well-equipped to be the main drivers of this disruption,” Yusuf said.