First Set Of African Coders Complete Andela’s 4-Year Fellowship Program

Written by Peter Pedroncelli


The first group of African coders and software engineers have successfully completed tech startup Andela‘s four-year fellowship program.

The tech startup, which trains and outsources African engineers and coders to work for global firms, has celebrated this unique milestone, with the developers in question becoming Andela alumni, according to the company.

Now that they have completed their fellowships, coders are now expected to join global and local companies, start their own ventures, or take senior developer roles at Andela to continue building the next generation of tech leaders at the company.

The Nigerian startup, which is headquartered in New York City, puts developers through a rigorous technical leadership program, allowing them to acquire management experience and technical expertise in software languages such as Ruby on Rails, Javascript, Python, Ruby, and React Native, among others.

Since launching in 2014, the company has hired and developed more than 700 software engineers across the continent who collectively help power the technology teams of more than 150 global companies, including MastercardMicrosoft, Google, IBMViacom, Pluralsight and GitHub.

The African coders who launched with the company four years ago have now become the first developers to have come full circle in completing the Andela fellowship.

Last week an event was organized at Darlington Hall Ilupeju to celebrate this milestone, with over 300 people attending, including families of the developers and Andela staff, according to Technova.

Andela's first set of African coders have completed their fellowship. Photo - Andela
Andela’s first set of African coders have completed their fellowship. Photo – Andela

With offices in Lagos, Nigeria, Nairobi, Kenya, Kampala, Uganda, Kigali, Rwanda and New York City and a track record of attracting investment, the company is an African tech startup success story.

Investing in African coders to solve the global technical talent shortage

Established by four professionals working in the online education and recruitment space, Andela builds high-performing engineering teams with Africa’s most talented software developers, with those teams then working for tech companies across the world.

Responding to a severe global shortage of software developers, Andela was formed to train and outsource software coders in Africa with the intention of having them work remotely for international companies. Around 1.3 million software jobs went unfilled in the U.S. in 2016 alone.

The company successfully raised $40 million in October last year as part of its most recent round of funding, according to ITNewsAfrica.

That funding round followed a $24 million Series B round in 2016, led by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, founded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan, Forbes reported.

The $40 million investment was led by pan-African venture firm CRE Venture Capital. Co-founded by Pule Taukobong and Pardon Makumbe, CRE is based in Johannesburg and registered in the U.S. Other investors include DBL Partners, Amplo, Salesforce Ventures, and Africa-focused TLcom Capital.

Existing investors also participated, including Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, GV, and Spark Capital.

Andela’s total venture funding now amounts to more than $80 million, and it has been operating for four years in Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda.

In July the company announced plans to expand its operations into Rwanda with the launch of a pan-African technology hub in Kigali, Andela’s fourth market, according to ITWebAfrica.

The expansion into the East African nation was made possible by a partnership between Andela and the government of Rwanda through the Rwanda Development Board, an organization responsible for transforming the country into a dynamic global hub for business, investment and innovation.