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Apply now for the Legatum Foundry Fellowship 2023 for young brilliant African Entrepreneurs.


The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship is excited to invite young brilliant entrepreneurs to the Legatum Foundry Fellowship for six weeks of leadership training to prepare fellows to lead initiatives that accelerate the development of ecosystems both within their home markets and throughout the continent. The aim is to shift the narrative of Africa to one of abundance, opportunity, innovation, and dynamism.

About The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship
The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) believes that entrepreneurs and their ideas are important for bringing long-lasting prosperity to developing markets. The Legatum Foundry Fellowship creates a community of African entrepreneurs who share a vision for a continent where people, ideas, and resources can freely move and where innovation-driven entrepreneurs can thrive. This community aims to change the way people think about Africa by showing its abundance, opportunities, innovation, and energy.

About The Legatum Foundry Fellowship Programme
The Legatum Foundry Fellowship is a six-month program for successful entrepreneurs who want to support and connect Africa’s innovation and entrepreneurship networks. It’s for leaders who want to make a positive impact on Africa by transforming systems and promoting inclusive growth.

The fellowship accepts 10 entrepreneurs each year and they work together as a group. This group setting helps fellows overcome challenges and plan their next steps in their entrepreneurial journeys. The program is designed to create a supportive environment for personal growth and transformation.

During the fellowship, fellows attend leadership seminars, take classes taught by MIT professors, and visit four different cities known for their innovation. By participating in these activities, fellows gain the skills and knowledge to lead initiatives that promote the development of entrepreneurship and innovation in their own countries and across Africa.

The fellowship is available to entrepreneurs based in Africa who meet the following criteria:

  • They have successfully started and grown a for-profit business driven by innovation.
  • They are now at a turning point in their careers and are preparing to transition into a leadership role in one of the following ways:
  1. Moving from running their own innovation-focused company to taking on a new leadership position within the ecosystem. This could involve starting a venture capital fund, launching an accelerator, or pursuing a career in policymaking.
  2. Establishing a new venture or organization that specifically aims to support and develop innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems throughout Africa.
  3. Expanding their existing innovation-driven business across the continent and, through this expansion, focusing on developing the ecosystem to achieve their growth objectives.
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Application process
To apply for the Legatum Foundry Fellowship, you will need to provide the following information and materials:

  • Personal Details: This includes your demographic information and contact details.
  • Founder and Company Information: You will need to share details about your role as a founder and provide information about your company.
  • Essay Questions: You will be asked to answer essay questions that explore your interest in the Fellowship program, your role as an ecosystem builder, and your understanding of entrepreneurial leadership.
  • Resume: Submit a resume that highlights your educational background, professional experience, leadership positions held, and any community involvement or engagement.
  • Video Summary: Create a 2-minute video in English where you summarize the key points of your application.
  • Letters of Recommendation: You are required to provide two letters of recommendation from individuals who know you well in professional capacities such as co-founder, mentor, board member, or senior manager in your company. It is your responsibility to give these recommenders sufficient time to complete the recommendation letters before the application deadline.
  • Selection: Applications will be carefully reviewed by an evaluation committee. If you are selected as a finalist, you will be invited to participate in one or more panel interviews as part of the selection process.

How to Apply
To apply for the Legatum Foundry Fellowship program

  • Complete the online application form.
  • Record and upload your 2-min video
  • Sign the application
  • Ensure that your two letters of recommendation have been submitted before the application deadline of July 7, 2023


  • Six months of training in personal leadership seminars, coursework with MIT faculty,
  • Experiential tours of four innovation ecosystems (cities) as a cohort.
  • A learning environment that is highly supportive of deep transformation for entrepreneurs in their leadership journeys.
  • The Legatum Foundry Fellowship program includes coverage for most expenses related to ecosystem tours, such as hotel accommodations, group meals, and group transportation.
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  • May 26: The application period opens.
  • July 7th: The application period closes.
  • August: Interviews with Legatum Center staff, community, and Legatum Foundry Fellowship Alumni.
  • September: Acceptance letters sent; commitments made.
  • October: Orientation (virtual).
  • November: Africa ecosystem tour (location TBD; approximately one week of travel).
  • February: Africa ecosystem tour (location TBD; approximately one week of travel).
  • April/May: US ecosystem tours (first location TBD; second location will be Boston/Cambridge; approximately two weeks of travel) and fellowship celebration event.

The submission deadline is July 7, 2023, at 11:59 PM ET.

Fellowship requirement
The requirements for the Legatum Foundry Fellowship program are:

  • English Language Proficiency: The fellowship program is conducted in English, so it is important that fellows feel comfortable expressing complex ideas in both written and verbal communication in English.
  • Attendance: Fellows are expected to attend all online sessions and in-person meetings organized as part of the fellowship. While most costs related to ecosystem tours, such as accommodation, group meals, and transportation, are covered, fellows are responsible for their own travel expenses to and from the ecosystem tours, as well as certain other travel-related costs.
  • Active Participation: Fellows are expected to actively participate in all sessions, giving their full attention to the discussions and topics covered during the fellowship.
  • Presentation of Future Plans: At the end of the six-month program, fellows are required to present their intended next steps after completing the Legatum Foundry Fellowship, outlining the actions they plan to take to further their goals and aspirations.
  • By adhering to these requirements and demonstrating a commitment to personal objectives, the fellowship cohort, and the development of the next generation of innovation-driven entrepreneurs in Africa, fellows can maximize their success in the program.
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  • If you know of an entrepreneur based in Africa who would be a perfect fit for the Legatum Foundry Fellowship, we encourage you to nominate them using our nomination form. By doing so, we will contact them and extend an invitation to complete an application.
  • Nominations will be accepted until June 27, 2023. However, please note that while nominations are encouraged, they are not mandatory for individuals to apply for the fellowship.

Legatum Foundry Fellowship Alumni videos

To watch videos of the profiles of the Legatum Foundry Fellowship alumni, please visit:

You can watch the video of the 2023 Legatum Foundry Fellowship ecosystem tour to Egypt, visit:

To watch the reflections from the 2022 Legatum Foundry Fellowship cohort, please visit:

To watch videos of the 2021 Legatum Foundry Fellowship ecosystem tour to Miami and MIT, please visit:

Types of opportunity: Grant
Deadline: 7th July 2023
Open to: Entreprenuers
Duration: 6 weeks
Location: Boston/Cambridge
Organizer: The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship
Country: African

For questions about the Legatum Foundry Fellowship email
For more information visit the Legatum Foundry Fellowship.

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