Gemini Enterprises Africa launches “Gemini Uplift Initiative” to propel startups forward during COVID-19

As the global economy comes to a near halt, and in the usual aspiration to positively impact entrepreneurs and the ecosystem, Gemini Enterprises Africa, part of Orascom Group, has launched the “Gemini Uplift Initiative”. The initiative will help founders tackle their most pressing on-ground operational issues and challenges while unlocking business opportunities that will allow them to build a more sustainable future.

The Gemini Uplift Initiative will be launched online throughout and after the Holy month of Ramadan in coordination with 45+ local, regional, and international partners providing support through the following three tracks - namely Money, Matchmaking, and Mentorship - in collaboration with the leading stakeholders in the entrepreneurship ecosystem.

In response to the initiative’s launch, Engineer Naguib Sawiris, Executive Chairman of Orascom Investment Holding, stated: “I am very excited about kicking off the Gemini Uplift Initiative. We believe in the importance of our responsibility to act now. Together with our partners, we are sure that we can uplift our entrepreneurs and startups to stand strong and sustain their businesses during these hard times. We will not let the Coronavirus beat us.”

“This initiative emerged from our belief in the significance of our role to bolster the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Our aim is to lead the startups towards operational continuity and economic sustainability during these hard times. My gratitude and sincere thanks to all the partners that generously offer their utmost contribution. Together we can do it," Adly Thoma, the Executive Chairman & CEO at Gemini Enterprises Africa, said.

Money:

The Money track provides co-investment opportunities and connections to future potential investors for pre-series A applicants in addition to acceleration programs with options to receive equity free funding. Partners for the Money track include: World Food Programme (WFP) - MINT by EGbank - Nahdet El Mahrousa - Alex Angels - Catalyst Partners - MAIN - MED Angels - Foundation Ventures - Egypt Ventures.

Matchmaking:

The Matchmaking track provides two-way business matchmaking opportunities in which entrepreneurs with running operations are able to get in touch with real businesses' needs through the right market exposure, in addition to acquiring business leads and access to their customers’ data. By doing so, large companies can extend their business operations to startups in order to implement new projects within the market in the least amount of time. Partners for the Matchmaking track include: Cairo ICT - UNTIL - UNDP - Orascom Investment - RiseUp - Techne Summit Dubrovnik - WPDI - Kamelizer - Founders Institute Cairo - Consulting Pad - Hub Africa - Gemini Holding.

Mentorship:

The Mentorship track provides all applicants with the opportunity for one-on-one financial, legal, HR, and media mentorship. Partners for the Matchmaking track include: The American University in Cairo (AUC) - Beltone - KPMG Hazem Hassan - MIT EF Pan Arab - Injaz Egypt - Falak - Flat6Labs - Fekretak Sherketak - Cairo Angels - SeedStars - Kidzania - HIM Angels - El- Shawarby Firm - Pyramids 138 - CultArk - Entrepreneurs' Organization - Alpha Group - Marshall Goldsmith.

Startups and SMEs in all industries throughout the Middle East, Africa, and Mediterranean countries are invited to apply by filling out different forms for each track through Gemini’s website. Applicants will then be carefully selected to join the various tracks through a steering committee (depending on eligibility).


An encouraging 33 startup deals took place in May 2020, which was an increase of 93% compared to April. This was largely driven by the Misk500 MENA Accelerator, which graduated its third batch of startups. Discover more details in our May 2020 Dashboard Report.