Our clients are national and sub-national governments, parastatal institutions concerned with growth and investment, multilateral organizations, corporations, foundations, universities, and private investors, including venture funds, angel investors, and family offices. They all share our keen interest in entrepreneurship for reasons that range from generating jobs and economic growth, to speeding the commercialization of innovation, to developing startup deals for business development purposes.
KolCo partnered with IMC Worldwide to implement the Accelerate Caribbean component of the Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean run by infoDev, a program of The World Bank Group. KolCo staff identified and mentored promising incubator and accelerator programs across more than a dozen Caribbean countries, conducting needs assessments, designing clinics and curricula for incubator managers, and providing one-on-mentoring and workshops for leading entrepreneurship ecosystem actors in the Caribbean region. The project also included a “study tour” with stops in Florida, to attend the International Conference on Business Incubation, and Toronto, to visit leading incubator programs.
The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) retained KolCo to perform a diagnostic of the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Ghana. KolCo staff spent two months in the West African nation speaking with entrepreneurs, local and foreign investors, and other ecosystem players such as accelerator programs, shared workspace hubs, and capacity-building programs. Using our Six + Six Model as an analytical framework, KolCo assessed the strengths and weaknesses of the ecosystem and presented DFID with high-level recommendations for pro-entrepreneurship programming. KolCo’s work was the first phase of a major entrepreneurship initiative DFID planned to roll out in several African nations.
KolCo consultants are lead mentors on a pan-African "post-accelerator" program for digital startups. XL Africa is supported by the World Bank Group and aims to provide young firms working on the continent with access to capital and experienced mentorship. Participating firms are drawn from many industries, but all are making use of digital solutions, be it fintech, agriculture, or gaming. KolCo is joined by IMC Worldwide and VC4Africa in implementing the program, which receives financial assistance from the governments of Finland, Norway, and Sweden.
How we work
Typically, KolCo works with clients in a three-step process:
Partners & Opportunities
KolCo works with dozens of partners worldwide to bolster entrepreneurship ecosystems, including incubators and workshop facilities; universities with entrepreneurship curriculums; angel investors and venture capital firms; leading personalities in the entrepreneurship/innovation space; and other non-profit and for-profit entities focusing on entrepreneurship. If you would like to be included in our network and/or are interested in jointly bidding for entrepreneurship ecosystem development work, we would like to hear from you. Please contact us and we will follow up for a conversation if there is a good fit.
KolCo is actively seeking:
Volunteer mentors to advise entrepreneurs in developing countries. Mentoring is typically remote (e.g. via Skype) and involves 1 to 100 hours of monthly sessions, according to the mentor’s availability. If interested, we’d love to know – please complete the form on our Contact page. Neither you nor KolCo are under any obligation. Once you’ve joined our roster of mentors we will come back to you when opportunities arise.
Consultants interested in working with KolCo on entrepreneurship development projects. Please send a CV, cover letter, and five-page writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org.
KolCo surveys a particular entrepreneurship landscape across the pillars of our Six + Six Model through extensive interviews and literature reviews.
Based on the information collected in the diagnostic phase, KolCo identifies, designs, and sources tailored entrepreneurship programming to meet client needs.
In the final phase, KolCo assists clients in the rollout and execution of programming diagrammed in the design phase.
Example programming initiatives
KolCo arranges extended mentorship relationships with startups and designs investment/support opportunities with established incubators and accelerators.
angel investor training
KolCo executes trainings to help current and potential angel investors develop a more informed understanding of the investment process and benefits of using angel investor groups to evaluate and syndicate deals.
KolCo organizes groups of accomplished entrepreneurs and early-stage investors to visit a country and help stimulate and grow its entrepreneurship ecosystem. These visits usually involve a high-profile business plan competition where delegates meet, mentor, and potentially invest in local entrepreneurs.
entrepreneurship journalism training
KolCo offers local journalists – who typically do not have experience covering startups – the foundational knowledge and skills to write about local entrepreneurs in their country.