Seedstars Africa Ventures Announces $100M Fund To Support African Startups

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Written by Peter Pedroncelli

African startup funding has been a challenge for years, but emerging markets startup competition Seedstars is doing something about it with a fund dedicated to supporting seed-stage companies.

The organization has launched a $100 million fund known as Seedstars Africa Ventures to invest in African startups in collaboration with Paris-based First Growth Ventures, according to Startupmgzn.

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Seedstars brings together the best tech startup talent from around the world, with a special focus on emerging economies.

Competitions take place in each participating country and the winner gets to pitch to global investors at the Seedstars World competition.

Since the competition launched in 2013, Seedstars has invested $50,000 to $500,000 in 40 African companies, Ventureburn reports.

The $100-million fund in Africa is Seedstars’ first such regional fund, and the organization expects to participate in and lead Series-A and -B funding rounds throughout the continent.

The announcement was made at the Seedstars World Summit at the SwissTech Convention Centre in Lausanne, Switzerland in April.

The fund plans to invest in 30 to 40 companies with the first investments expected by the end of 2019, according to Techawk.

startup competition
Seedstars has launched a $100 million fund to focus on supporting African startups. Photo – Seedstars

Seedstars expects to fund innovative startups with early-stage investments of $250,000 to $5 million, TechtrendsKE reports.

First Growth Ventures is a French VC fund that focuses on early-stage companies in sub-Saharan Africa that can leverage technology to enable growth.

In April 2019, the Seedstars World Summit took place in Switzerland, with winners from emerging markets throughout the world invited to pitch in the 2019 global final.

Three African startups made it to the top 12 at the event. These include Ghanian agri-tech startup CowTribe, Kenyan insurance tech firm Bluewave, and Rwandan fintech startup Benefactors, according to DisruptAfrica.

In 2018 Ghanaian agritech startup Agrocenta was the winner of the Seedstars World competition, earning a $500,000 investment from Seedstars as a result, according to Techmoran.