Aquaculture for all

A unique opportunity to build a blue venture in Africa

Blue carbon Tilapia / Cichlids Events +6 more

A new initiative that aims to to support and accelerate the development of ventures in southern Africa’s blue economy is now open for applications.

Heading off to a fish farm on Lake Victoria

The Blue Venture builder is looking for applications from entrepreneurs in blue economy fields such as aquaculture, fisheries, maritime transport and ocean energy. © Proscovia Alando

Initiated by the GIZ Spark programme* and implemented by Hatch, in collaboration with Ocean Hub Africa, the Blue Venture Builder will provide participants with access to resources, technical experts, potential investors and corporate partners over the course of a four month period, which will kick off with an in-person week at a location in southern Africa.

The initial cohort will be open to applicants from Angola, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Tanzania, especially those with a focus on relevant blue economy fields such as aquaculture, fisheries, maritime transport and ocean energy.

These areas align with the core values of the initiative’s founders at the GIZ Spark programme, which supports African innovation and investment ecosystems. As Bernhard Rohkemper, ocean impact lead at GIZ Namibia, reflects: “The potential for impact innovation along Africa’s coastline is enormous. We are excited to play our part to help entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers and other sea-minded innovators turn ocean assets into sustainable futures.”

Meanwhile OHA supports, connects and invests in visionary entrepreneurs throughout Africa whose businesses focus on positive impacts on the ocean and the blue economy.

As Alexis Grosskopf, CEO of OHA, observes: “The venture builder is an amazing opportunity to complete the ecosystem building effort Ocean Hub Africa initiated some years ago, now with the support of GIZ and Hatch. Supporting ideation for development of coastal adaptation and resilience technologies in Africa, unleashing the true power of tech-for-good for the under-served of the blue economy. I cannot wait to see applications coming through - calling upon all the brightest of good souls out there to apply now!”

14 innovation studios and counting...

Hatch is a fund and startup accelerator working to revolutionise the way seafood is produced through investing in technological development. They have a depth of experience, having run 14 international innovation studios, with a focus on aquaculture, seafood and the wider blue economy.

“Building an investable scalable venture requires so many key ingredients with human capital being a significant driver for success. This Blue Venture Builder Africa initiative seeks to leverage the diverse talent knowledge and expertise in the region in order to engineer and create sustainable successful businesses in the blue economy. I am excited to find and work with the next generation of African blue talent over the course of this initiative,” reflects Wayne Murphy, co-founder and managing partner of Hatch.

“To be clear, we are seeking a gender diverse group of applicants from all backgrounds, experience, disciplines, knowledge and skills but with one common objective: seeking to build a scalable impactful solution in the blue economy and making a difference," he adds.

Successful applicants will be taken through a three-phase programme. Following the in-person 10 day kickoff “bootcamp” from 1-10 May 2024, there will be a two month remote validation stage; after which up to five teams will be selected – based on their market potential, quality of team and initial traction – to pitch to investors for funding.


The application process is open until 29 March and the information deck for potential applicants is here. For any further questions contact

*The programme is being funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

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