UK Kenya Tech Hub Transform East Africa Fund Applications 2023

Deadline: Friday 28th July 2023

UK Kenya Tech Hub Transform East Africa Fund Applications 2023

Applications are now open for the UK Kenya Tech Hub Transform East Africa Fund Applications 2023. Transform aims to reach as many startups as they can which have Innovations within the areas of health, waste, water and sanitation, environment, inclusive economics, raising living standards and impacts a large amount of people while at it.

This time round they are looking to get as many startups as possible to choose from giving a better and equal chance for startup in rural and marginalised areas to compete for grant funding.

Criteria – UK Kenya Tech Hub Transform East Africa Fund Applications 2023

To receive funding from TRANSFORM, projects must meet all of the following criteria.

  • Have a clear potential to create positive impact on low-income people’s lives in one of the six areas that TRANSFORM funds.

o   East Africa Selection Panel can choose to focus on a few or all these priority areas. It is mandatory that projects must link back to at least one of the chosen impact areas.

  • Tackle social and environmental challenges in a genuinely innovative way.

–          Projects must include a new technology, business model or approach – this could involve taking a proven business model to a new market.

  • Have the potential to operate in areas relevant to Unilever’s expertise and capability as the implementing partner and where Unilever can add value to the project development.

o   Projects must be relevant to Unilever East Africa specifically.

  • Will generate global public goods through contributing to public knowledge or research.

o   We must transparently publish learnings from the programme.

o   Intellectual property generated from the projects will vest with the social entity.

o   Unilever, the FCDO and EY cannot have exclusive use of this intellectual property.

  • Have a plan to create a market-based solution with the potential to reach operational sustainability.

o   The application must come from a social enterprise, rather than an NGO.

  • Have a potential to reach scale

o   There must be clear pathway for the proposed project to be commercially viable at scale, with assumptions which can be tested through the project in order to secure follow-on funding.

o   The enterprise must have sufficient capacity to effectively deliver the project and to absorb the financing and in-kind support provided during the project

All projects funded by TRANSFORM must demonstrate additionality, in other words, we must not use TRANSFORM funding to fund initiatives that Unilever would have funded alone. Unilever cannot receive TRANSFORM funds to run internal projects and funds must be provided to third parties only.

Projects must also demonstrate that they are additional using at least one of the criteria below:

  • Projects scoped to specifically reach low-income consumers.
  • Projects being applied in new geographies.
  • Projects where there is a first mover disadvantage.
  • Projects with payback periods longer than normal commercial business cases.
  • Projects with high-risk profiles.

Terms and Conditions

These terms and conditions (the “Terms”) govern your entry into the Programme. By submitting an entry or idea in any form to the programme you agree to these Terms.

Who Can Enter

Entry to the programme is open to startups from Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia

Each entry must:
  1. Have the name and contact details of those entering;
  2. Include all other information required on the entry form;
  3. Be from within Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia;
  4. Be submitted to us on or before the challenge submission deadline
Can I enter more than once?

Yes – you can enter upto two ideas.

How will the judges decide who wins?

Association of Countrywide Hubs, Assek and E4Impact have endeavored to select a panel of judges/mentors with a range of experience and knowledge in Trade, Health and Agriculture.

The judges/mentors will contribute to selecting up to ten (10) finalists and will be responsible for selecting the overall five (3) winners.

The judges will use multiple criteria when selecting the overall winner, such as:

  1. Ability to clearly articulate the problem being addressed
  2. Ability to describe how the solution solves the problem
  3. The potential benefits of the solution
  4. The potential collaborators for driving the idea forward
Will I lose intellectual property rights surrounding my entry?

To the extent that you own any intellectual property rights around the idea included in your entry, those rights will remain your property. Nothing in these Terms grants us any interest in those rights (other than to the extent necessary for making an assessment in accordance with these Terms).

If the idea included in your entry involves the use of any third party intellectual property, this must be disclosed in your entry.

Intellectual property generated from the projects will vest with the social entity. Confidentiality

We recognize the sensitivity of the information you provide, and will take care in handling confidential matters. The Organizers will ensure that its services are delivered in a manner that preserves the privacy of inventors, the confidentiality of commercially sensitive information and protects any potential value in intellectual property arising from an innovation.

Entrants that become winners will be required to sign a non-disclosure agreement to ensure the ideas discussed will remain confidential.

Obligations of confidentiality will not apply in relation to information which:

  1. Is or becomes publicly known;
  2. Is already known to us at the time of disclosure; or
  3. Is independently acquired or developed by us or any third party without the benefit of use of your information.

We may retain for our records copies of all information you provide in relation to the challenge.

Do I need to have developed my idea?

No. We are interested in all stages of ideas. It doesn’t matter whether you have an initial idea, are at the research and development stage, have a working prototype or are already at the pilot and testing stages, you’re still eligible to enter.

Are there grounds for disqualification?

We can disqualify entries if we think they breach these Terms, are frivolous, contain offensive subject matter or could otherwise damage our reputation.

We may disqualify your entry if you attempt to approach any of the judges other than when invited.


If you win a prize, you consent to The Organizers using your name and picture(s) for advertising and publicity purposes without further compensation.


All prizes will be awarded at The Organizers and the judges’ discretion and will be announced at the award ceremony.

No liability

You agree that under no circumstances will The Organizers or any of the programme partners be liable to you for any cost, expense, loss or other claim of any kind arising directly or indirectly out of your entry to or otherwise in connection with the programme.


If you become selected among the top ten finalists, you will provide The Organizers information around revenue, employment and any other information The Organizers might need for reporting purposes for up to 4 years after the hackathon closes.

Competition Changes

The Organizers may change the competition rules and regulations at any time.


The top 10 high-impact enterprises will be awarded  £100,000 to £300,000

For more information, click here