Naspers Is Investing $300M In Quest For 1st Major African Tech Startup Win
Africa’s most valuable company is putting more of its vast war-chest of investment dollars to work in South Africa.
Naspers, the Cape-Town based giant, has announced plans to invest $314 million in tech businesses in South Africa over the next three years. Of that amount, around $92 million will be committed to Naspers Foundry, a startup fund for tech businesses. The fund, Naspers says, “aims to fund and support South African technology startups seeking to address big societal needs.” Naspers will spend the remainder on startups it has already invested in, including OLX, delivery service Mr D Food and e-commerce firm, Takealot.
The fund and the focus on South Africa could have an outsize impact on the country’s tech startup ecosystem and could, in turn, attract more tech investment dollars to countries beyond South Africa. But that might depend on whether it has relatively early successes.
Story from Quartz Africa. Story By Yomi Kazeem.
Naspers’ growing commitment to funding local startups is crucial as, having morphed from largely being a traditional newspaper media company into an internet conglomerate, the company is best known for its large investments outside Africa. Its $32 million bet on a 46.5% stake in Tencent, the Chinese internet company, in 2011 was the key to its overall transformation. As Tencent’s valuation has since shot up, so has Naspers’ stake which is now worth over $100 billion. Back in February, Naspers led a $100m Series F investment in Swiggy, an Indian online food ordering and delivery platform. The company has also backed Flipkart, the Indian e-commerce company, with a $616 million investment—a move that paid off when its 11% stake was sold for $1.6 billion in May.
Read more at Quartz Africa.