Africa Internet Group Raises $245M From Goldman Sachs And Other Existing Investors

Written by Kevin Mwanza

Africa Internet Group (AIG), one of the largest e-commerce companies on the continent, has raised $245 million (225 million euros) in one of the largest fundraising rounds by an African-focused tech firm.

The funding has been raising from US-based investment bank Goldman Sachs and existing investors South African telecom MTN Group and German startup incubator Rocket Internet, Financial Times reported.

Last month, AIG’s valuation rose to above $1 billion after French insurance giant AXA said it was going to inject $84 million for an 8 percent stake in Jumia’s parent company.

Jumia, whose transactions nearly tripled in the first nine months of 2015 to reach $230 million, to use the funds to support its continued growth, and to execute on attractive development opportunities in Africa along with AIG’s other ecommerce platforms, IT Online reported.

“This investment is a recognition of the success that Jumia has already achieved and provides us with a strategic flexibility to further support our efforts to offer the best shopping experience to our customers,” Sacha Poignonnec and Jeremy Hodara, founders and co-CEOs of Jumia and AIG, said in a statement.

Other e-commerce startups owned by AIG include travel website Jovago, classified real estate site Kaymu, as well as food delivery startup Hellofood.

AIG was founded in Nigeria in 2012 with a sales approach similar to Amazon. It is the first African tech startup to reach the $1 billion valuation mark.

The group has grown to create 71 different companies across 26 African countries including Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Morocco, Senegal, Tanzania, and Uganda.

“We are impressed by AIG’s pan-African operations and execution capabilities, and believe the combination of strategic partners and management’s demonstrated expertise uniquely position the company’s ecosystem to play a leading role in the development of Africa’s online economy,” said Jules Frebault of Goldman Sachs.