Google’s Hustle Academy, designed to improve business acumen and skill sets for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), has celebrated the graduation of 5,300 SMEs.
The graduation ceremonies took place in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria, pushing the total of entrepreneurs across Africa benefiting from the programme since its launch in 2022 to more than 10,000.
The Hustle Academy program focuses on addressing the challenges faced by African SMEs and provides practical skills and resources that are essential for business growth. This year’s cohort builds upon the foundation of the more than 5,000 SMEs who graduated last year.
The graduates represent a wide range of industries, demonstrating the diverse and dynamic nature of entrepreneurship in South Africa. These businesses, through their participation in the Hustle Academy, have shown a remarkable capacity for innovation and resilience.
“The Hustle Academy program stands as a beacon of what practical training and resource provision can accomplish,” said Alistair Mokoena, country director for Google, South Africa. “Today’s graduation is not only a celebration of their hard work but also an acknowledgment of their role in enriching the South African business environment.”
Lufuno Rasoesoe, founder of South African based business TOSH Detergents and a graduate, said: “The training I received at the Hustle Academy has been incredibly beneficial. It offered us concrete tools and strategies specifically tailored for businesses like ours.
“We’ve been able to improve our operational efficiency and better understand the dynamics of the South African market, which has been vital for our growth and ability to innovate within our means.”
At the graduation ceremonies, Google released the Hustle Academy Impact Report, which found that 80% of entrepreneurs who completed the Hustle Academy reported experiencing revenue growth. The report also found that, upon graduating from the Hustle Academy, there has been an average creation of 4 jobs for every 10 businesses.