The cooperation between DIHK/AHKs and BMZ/GIZ aims to build up a support structure for local start-ups in developing countries by connecting them with relevant players from the “old economy” abroad and in Germany as well. A Chamber-run accelerator can support high-potential founders and emerging companies to successfully enter the international market and scale their business globally.

DIHK/AHKs in this context could provide access to mentors, co-working space, valuable connections and the knowledge and expertise required to turn their business into a success. The global network of AHKs in cooperation with the local Chambers in Germany (IHKs) will serve as a bridge between Africa and Germany.

Areas of present and future cooperation from the perspective of DIHK/AHKs could be as follows:

  • Working together with corporate partners from the Make-IT Alliance:
  • Winning them over as potential mentors and advisers for young African start-ups and partners for scaling up, as well as gaining their support during the envisaged delegation trips and summer schools in Germany (hosting events, meeting up with corporate investors, attending in-house seminars etc.)
  • Working together with official development agencies (GIZ, BMZ):
  • Supporting start-ups on different levels with the aim of improving the local ecosystem and overall conditions for young entrepreneurs, i.e. access to local funding, supply of IT infrastructure, political lobbying etc.
  • DIHK/AHK vision for future cooperation with the Make-IT Initiative:
  • A future cooperation with BMZ could expand this regional approach onto other continents as well. Together with partners of the “Make-IT Alliance” a landing platform will be established for young start-ups from different countries worldwide seeking to reach out to other start-up ecosystems.


The Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Deutscher Industrie- und Handelskammertag, DIHK) is the central organisation for 79 Chambers of Commerce and Industry, CCI (Industrie- und Handelskammern, IHKs) in Germany. All German companies registered in Germany, with the exception of handicraft businesses, the free professions and farms, are required by law to join a chamber.

Thus, the DIHK speaks for more than three million entrepreneurs. They include not only big companies but also retailers and innkeepers. This gives the association considerable political influence. It does not represent any specific corporate group but all commercial enterprises in Germany.

Economic development and a thriving business community both in Germany and abroad are at the very heart of the AHKs (the German Chamber Network). As government-backed institutions for the development of bilateral trade and investment relations between Germany and the world, AHKs are located in all countries that are of strategic importance to the German economy. The AHK network is deeply involved in the rapid development of today’s global markets. 130 AHK offices in 90 different countries operate in service for German and foreign companies alike, aiming to strengthen business relations between Germany and their respective host countries. AHKs worldwide rely on their capacity as professional service providers as well as strong membership organizations with almost 50,000 corporate members worldwide.


Under the AHK service brandmark DEinternational, companies receive worldwide professional advice and support for the successful establishment and expansion of their business activities abroad. The AHKs have many years of experience in the foreign markets and are at the service of companies as a reliable partner in business planning. They form a bridge between markets and cultures, the employees are always bilingual and know the opportunities and risks for their export business.

Take me to: DIHK

Take me to: AHK

Activities & Events supported by DIHK

Make-IT at High-Level Forum Africa-Europe

On 17 and 18 December 2018 the Africa-Europe Forum „Taking Cooperation to the Digital Age“ will take place in Vienna   In addition to the 28 EU Heads of State and Government as well as…

DIHK Start.Up! Germany 2018

Between October 7th and 12th, 50 start-ups from 21 countries participated in the Start.Up! Germany roadshow and traveled through Düsseldorf Cologne and the Ruhr area. During the 1-week roadshow the start-ups had the chance to…

EarlyBird Ventures Storytelling for Business Masterclass

On Friday 10th August 2018, Make-IT in Africa in collaboration with EarlyBird Ventures held a Storytelling for Business masterclass at Metta, Nairobi. EarlyBird Ventures is an African pre-seed stage funding interventions company. They invest both…

Digital Innovation Made in Africa Vol. 1 now in Dortmund

In its showcase series “Digital Innovation Made in Africa”, Make-IT presents good practices from African tech entrepreneurs with a high potential for social impact. The photo-exhibition tells the story of 20 young tech start-ups to highlight…

DIHK Start.Up! Germany

45 start-ups from 16 countries were chosen to participate in the Start.up! Germany Roadshow 9 start-ups from Kenya and Nigeria sponsored by Make-IT in Africa joined the trip 1 week of international exposure, networking and…

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