Our Story

While earning an MBA at Harvard in 2008, Karibu Nyaggah led a student trip to his home country of Kenya. It was a chance to show his fellow classmates the innovative spirit of Kenya as well as the challenges that still exist in Africa. During the trip he met Courtney Mills, a fellow Christian and Harvard grad student who was researching sustainable solutions to poverty. She envisioned creating an accelerator program for startup entrepreneurs in Kenya. Together they dreamed how the accelerator could advance God’s Kingdom in a practical way while alleviating poverty.

The following year Harvard funded Courtney Mills and Matt Stolhandske to research the viability of launching an early stage accelerator program in Nairobi. They saw the need to train entrepreneurs how to grow successful businesses but also how to navigate corrupt and unethical marketplaces and how to integrate their faith with their business.

They called this idea Sinapis after the Latin name for the mustard seed that Jesus spoke about, which starts out small yet grows to be great and support the life around it (Mark 4:31-32).
Sinapis launched in 2010 as a small accelerator and has grown to manage its own offices in East Africa in Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda. In these markets we offer entrepreneurship training and ongoing alumni community, acceleration and advisory services for high-potential founders, and integrated discipleship.

In 2017, we began to cultivate a growing global network of like-minded entrepreneur capacity-building organizations who share our mission. By 2022, these Sinapis Network partners served entrepreneurs in Brazil, Burundi, Egypt, Ghana, Liberia, Mexico, Mongolia, and Mozambique. Each partner has access to our curriculum and tools, which they contextualize to meet the unique needs of the entrepreneurs they serve.

To date, Sinapis has trained over 8,000 entrepreneurs through trainings and workshops, who have in turn improved the income or livelihood of nearly a quarter of a million people in emerging and frontier markets.

"Sinapis has hugely contributed to our business's growth, sustainability, and success. They have helped link us to potential investors/funding opportunities, publicized our business to the market, and provided ongoing strategic advice."

Leah Imaita
Co-Owner, Jazza Centre

"This is one program every business owner should consider enrolling in. The benefits are immeasurable. I'm a beneficiary. Thank you, Sinapis!"

Joseph Gichunge
Co-Founder & CEO, Jazza Centre

"Sinapis gave me a full kit to use to start my business."

Niyonzima Pierre
CEO & Founder, Safe Sana

"At Sinapis I gained the skills I needed in order to manage my business. I also learned how to raise funds from investors."

Murerwa Xavier
CEO, Gishuri Chicken Organic Farm

"Sinapis was instrumental in improving my general business management, time allocation, and building strong networking connections."

Geoffrey Kinaalwa
CEO & Founder, La' Marc

"The Sinapis Entrepreneur Academy unit economics class helped me determine my unit and how much it costs for me to produce one."

Alex Wanyu
Founder, Alexander Perfumery LTD

"When we started our Sinapis classes, we were asked to pick one business. I chose a new venture I was getting into - speaking. I would never have imagined that just over a year later I would be speaking on the biggest stage - TED. May this be a testimony that Kingdom business has a benefit here and in Heaven."

Robert A. Belle
CEO, SMIP Consultancy

"Sinapis gave me conviction to know that you can still do business the right way - The Kingdom Business Way. You do not have to bribe or pay your way into a contract. Hard work, faith, and prayer works wonders. I am truly grateful for this."

Brian Gacheru
CEO, Pristine Linen & Laundry Limited

"I loved the Kingdom Business aspect and approach in the program. I am more enlightened than I was when I joined the program. It is very worthwhile."

Margaret Njenga
Founder, Margarita Bakes