1Million Startups 

1 min read
01 Jan 2024

Sector: Impact

We are part of an international community of entrepreneurs running sustainable and successful enterprises with impact not only locally, but also globally.

1Million Startups East Africa is a local chapter of a global entrepreneurship community focused on solving challenges in alignment with at least one of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The organization’s mission is to build a community of early- and growth-stage entrepreneurs who manage sustainable and successful enterprises with both local and global impact. “Since our alignment is with the SDGs, impact is key to us. We strive to help the entrepreneurs we work with to localize the SDG they are aligned to in their company and incorporate in their business in order to grow their impact,” said Margaret Mutheu, founder of 1Million Startups East Africa. 

Launched in November 2017, the organization has over eight hundred members from across the region and has impacted over five hundred entrepreneurs through its initiatives. It provides members with access to a global multimedia platform that gives them visibility and exposure to investors. “We connect the entrepreneurs to opportunities through the different local and international partners that we work with,” Margaret says. 1Million Startups East Africa also runs two dedicated programs. Its accelerator, the ELEVATE investment-readiness program, is aimed at entrepreneurs looking to attract capital and has a women-only hub called Women Biz360, which empowers women in business and connects them with technology, funding and market access.

A number of success stories have emerged from 1Millon Startups East Africa’s programs. Chicken Basket, an enterprise impacting youth through poultry farming in western Kenya, was able to access capital after completing the ELEVATE program and The Label Saba, an accessories startup that uses sustainable materials, has experienced exceptional growth internationally. Agribusiness Mula Export is impacting hundreds of smallholder farmers in Kenya, while Wachia Agencies, which provides luggage lockers, was selected for the pan-African Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Program last year. “We hope to help all startups get the support they need in order to grow and make an impact globally,” Margaret says.


  • Align with an SDG. 
    You need to be passionate about and aligned with at least one UN Sustainable Development Goal.
  • Show validation. 
    You need to have completed the proof of concept stage and have some revenue and customers.
  • Demonstrate purpose. 
    We want purpose-driven entrepreneurs working on scalable solutions that solve a real social challenge.
  • Be seeking funding. 
    Your business should be looking for investment in order to grow.

Application can be sent via


Photo by 1Million Startups