10 Venture Capital Funds Investing In African Tech In 2019
Venture capital funds around the world are taking note of Africa and the promise that the tech ecosystem holds on the continent.
2019 has already seen big funding rounds across fintech including a $170 raise for Kenya’s Branch International.
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The company, now based in Silicon Valley, offers personal loans for as little as $2 up to around $700 via mobile in emerging markets.
The round was led by Foundation Capital and Visa with participation from B Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, Formation 8, and Trinity Ventures.
Here are 10 venture capital funds that have been investing in African tech during 2019.
Paris-based global venture capital firm Partech Partners is a global investment platform focused on tech and digital companies. In addition to Paris, Partech has offices in San Francisco, Berlin and Dakar in Senegal. In April, Y Combinator-backed Nigerian fintech startup Kudi raised a $5 million Series A round led by Partech Partners with participation from the Silicon Valley investor YC and Khosla Ventures, according to Ventureburn.
Morocco-based Outlierz Ventures is one of the African funds that have been busy in 2019. Launched in 2017 and backed by private investors from Silicon Valley, the Middle East, and Africa, the fund invests in tech-enabled startups across fintech, insurtech, agritech, healthtech, and logistics. In March the VC firm announced investments in Moroccan B2B marketplace WaystoCap, Kenyan retail distribution chain Sokowatch, and Egyptian B2B grocery e-commerce platform MaxAB, according to Weetracker.
Established in 2017 by Yele Bademosi, Nigerian venture capital firm Microtraction already has investments in startups including Wallet.ng, ThankUCash, CowryWise, and Accounteer. In 2019, the investor provided undisclosed funding amounts for advanced diagnostic startup, Stack Dx, and e-commerce review and fintech firm Sendbox, Technext reports.
Generation Investment Management
In January, London-based investment firm, Generation Investment Management, led a $100 million funding round in Andela, a Nigerian tech startup company that outsources African tech talent — mostly to U.S. companies. The investment brought Andela’s venture capital funding to date to $180 million, Bloomberg reported.
U.S.-based solar energy investment firm SunFunder is another of the investors with an interest in African tech in the first months of 2019. Uganda-based solar energy firm SolarNow announced a $9 million credit fund led by SunFunder in January, Techpoint reported. This represents SunFunder’s second investment in SolarNow, as the firm provided a similar $6 million facility at the end of 2017. The investor was also part of a $2 million investment in Mozambique’s SolarWorks. The solar investment firm also contributed to pay-as-you-go solar company Peg Africa‘s $25 million Series C funding round in March, according to a press release.
U.S. tech incubator Y Combinator, perhaps the world’s most powerful startup accelerator program, has backed many African tech companies over the years. The Silicon Valley-based incubator has been fairly active in 2019 on the African front, backing two Nigerian startups, fintech startup Kudi in April and e-logistics company Kobo360 in March, according to Technxt. Other African tech startups that have been backed by YC include Ghanaian media startup OMG Digital, Nigerian fintech startup Flutterwave, Senegalese solar startup Oolu, Egyptian crowd-sourcing platform InstaBug, and Nigerian fintech startup Paystack.
CRE Venture Capital
Pan-African venture firm CRE Venture Capital was involved in the massive $100 million funding round into Andela in January. Co-founded by Pule Taukobong and Pardon Makumbe, CRE is based in Johannesburg and registered in the U.S. Other African investment interests include Resource, Prepclass, and Sweepsouth.
4DX Ventures is an Africa-focused early stage venture firm with offices in Accra and San Francisco. In January the VC led a $12 million Series B funding round in Ghanaian healthtech company mPharma, according to Crunchbase. In previous years it invested in the likes of Kenyan e-commerce startup Sokowatch and Nigerian solar-powered internet service provider Tizeti.
Dutch impact investor Goodwell Investments has also been active within the African tech scene, with two notable investments made so far in 2019. In January, Goodwell participated in a $1.85 million Series A round for South African transport mobility platform WhereIsMyTransport. A few weeks later in February, Copia, a Kenyan e-commerce firm giving underserved people in rural areas access to goods they’d normally have to travel for, raised a $2 million equity investment through the Dutch investor, according to Ventureburn.
Saviu Ventures is a France-based, Mauritius-incorporated micro venture capital firm which was founded in 2017. The firm has been involved in two investments so far in 2019, a $565,000 seed round in Ivorian fashion startup, Afrikrea.com, and a $1 million investment in Mauritius-based human resources startup, Talent2Africa, according to Weetracker.