Kenyan Mobile Distribution Platform Twiga Secures $30M Funding Led By Goldman Sachs

Written by Peter Pedroncelli
Goldman Sachs
A Kenyan mobile distribution platform plans a West African expansion after securing $30 million in funding led by U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs. Image supplied by Twiga Foods

Twiga Foods, a Kenyan mobile distribution platform co-founded by a former Coca-Cola executive, has secured $30 million in funding led by U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs and plans to expand in West Africa.

A cashless platform, Twiga Foods allows vendors to order and pay for vegetables and fresh food from smallholder farmers, resulting in a more efficient supply chain. By using tech to connect supply with demand, Twiga reduces the need for middlemen who add cost and inefficiency to the supply chain.   

Twiga was founded in 2014 by Kenyan Peter Njonjo and American Grant Brooke. Njonjo, the most senior Kenyan and African manager at Coca-Cola, left the company this year after 21 years to become CEO at Twiga. Brooke was the former CEO.

The $30 million Series-B funding round was led by Goldman Sachs with participation from Washington D.C.-based International Finance Corporation, Paris-based investment firm Creadev, and London-based African VC firm TLcom Capital, which is focused on funding African tech startups.

The Kenyan startup financed $6.25 million of the funding in convertible debt and $23.75 million in equity, according to a press release sent to Moguldom.

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Twiga Foods expects to use the new investment to set up a distribution center in Nairobi and continue offering supply chain services for both agricultural and non-perishable consumer products.

The firm also aims to expand into more cities in Kenya including Mombasa, while targeting a West African expansion by the third quarter of 2020, Techcrunch reports.

Twiga Foods did not disclose which new African countries it will launch in.

Goldman Sachs investing in African startups

Goldman Sachs has backed several African startups in the last two years, including e-commerce firm Jumia, which has since listed in New York, and South African fintech startup Jumo.

In June, Twiga Foods raised $5 million in funding from Creadev, a French firm with offices in Nairobi, Shanghai and New York.

In November 2018, Twiga Foods raised a $10 million Series B investment led by U.S.-based International Finance Corporation.

Twiga Foods claims to source fresh and processed foods from more than 17,000 producers and delivers three times per week on average to more than 8,000 retailers, according to the press release.

Twiga Foods is a graduate of Ghana’s Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology, a training program, seed fund and Africa’s largest tech incubator.