Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, Nairobi has cemented its position as a rising star in the African startup scene, advancing 24 positions to achieve the 113th spot globally, a notable rise from 137th place last in 2023.

The latest Global Startup Ecosystem Index report, released by the sector research centre, StartupBlink, documented this advancement.

Regionally, Nairobi has also climbed the ranks among African cities, now holding third place after surpassing Cape Town, South Africa.

This progression follows a steady ascent from its previous position of 163rd in 2022.

The city's enhancement in the startup sphere can be attributed to several key factors.

Significant public sector initiatives have played a role, such as the development of tech hubs like the Konza Technopolis and the anticipated enactment of the Startup Act, which is designed to foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship.

The report stated, “Besides public sector efforts, Nairobi is home to regional offices of global tech giants like Google, Microsoft, Samsung, and Intel, which makes the city attractive to tech startups. Also, the presence of accelerators like Antler and Pangea Accelerator contributes to the startup culture.”

Additionally, the Association of Startup and SMEs Enablers of Kenya (ASSEK) has been instrumental in cultivating connections among ecosystem stakeholders, enhancing Nairobi's appeal as a hub for startups.

The mobile payment system M-Pesa has also been a crucial factor in cementing Nairobi’s status as an innovative tech centre.

"Its takeoff was impressive considering Kenya’s relatively low population compared to larger African economies," the report observes.

Nairobi’s rise comes amid reports of entrepreneurial challenges within the local landscape, with many startups either scaling back operations or closing down due to an extended funding drought.

In a further triumph for Kenya, Kisumu has entered the global top 1,000 list for the first time, securing the 985th position.

Conversely, Mombasa has seen a decline, continuing its downward trajectory from last year by dropping to the 937th position.

Nairobi’s advancements underscore its growing significance within the global startup ecosystem, reflecting both the city's resilience and the effectiveness of its strategic initiatives to support innovation and entrepreneurship.