The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (Mark Zuckerberg and his wife’s, Dr. Priscilla Chan, social issues-minded fund) made their first large investment in Andela Lagos, a tech company which works at training more engineers in Africa to get more tech jobs.
Back in June, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative had led a $24 million Series B round of funding into Andela which also has a base in Nairobi. The venture firm GV had joined the round, alongside existing investors Spark Capital, Omidyar Network, Learn Capital, and CRE Ventures.
The move shot Andela to the spotlight as bloggers around the country attempted to cover the story of their rise. The company which was founded by a team and had an original vision to create a training platform for coders as well as an outsourcing firm for the software developers they train, is in the news again alongside Mark Zuckerberg.
This time they made the news because Mark Zuckerberg paid Andela Lagos a visit on Tuesday. The excitement was palpable and shows through in the video which the company uploaded.
Mark Zuckerberg said to the team;
“You are all a part of something that’s really important and I thank you for that — it’s awesome to get a chance to meet you.”
This visit may answer to an extent the question posed by C.E.O Jeremy Johnson before he met Zuckerberg in June. Forbes had quoted him as saying that his first thought was; “how seriously is he really taking this, and how much do he and Priscilla really care?”
His visit saw the company declaring on YouTube that;
“We are excited and honored to welcome Mark Zuckerberg to Lagos. His visit reinforces not only his support of Andela’s mission, but his belief that indeed the next generation of great technology leaders will come out of Lagos, Nairobi, and cities across Africa.”
Zuckerberg also paid a visit to the Co-creation Hub Nigeria (CcHUB) in Lagos. He spoke to kids at a summer coding camp there and entrepreneurs who had come to CcHub to build and launch their apps.