Despite the global pandemic, Venture Capital Investments in the Nigerian tech space was significant in 2020.
Tech startups headquartered or having a significant presence in Nigeria raised over $377 million dollars in the past year, a huge increase from the $178m raised from funding rounds in 2018.
However, there was a notable drop from the milestone funding recorded last year. According to a report, Startups headquartered in Nigeria raised $377m in 2019.
Another report pointed out that startups focused in Nigeria and Kenya alone raised USD 1.09 Bn, a whopping 81.49% of the total VC money raised in Africa.
In comparison, Nigeria accounted for just about 17% of the over $1 billion African funding in 2020.
Nigeria remain’s Africa’s Top Investment Destination
2020 saw investors diversify in their investments as new sectors like clean energy and health-tech saw increased funding. Last year’s investment hotbeds like Fintech and Logistics have somewhat slowed down due to the economic uncertainties caused by the pandemic.
However, the finance sector is still the most desirable sector in the Nigerian tech space, gathering the most number of deals and investments during the year.
The top 5 highest fundraisers of 2020 collectively raised $297 million in funding rounds which ranged from pre-seed, seed stage, Series A to D funding, cooperate funding, grants to angel investment and debt financing.
Here are the Top 5 startups that raised the stakes in funding in 2020.
Bolt ($180 million)
The popular ride-hailing company, Bolt ended the year with a bang. The company recently announced a $180 million Series D round led by D1 Capital Partners, making it the biggest winner in fund-raising this year.
Founded in 2013, Bolt is a transportation company which provides ride-hailing, micro-mobility, and food delivery services to over 50M users in 40+ countries, from Europe to Africa.
Although Bolt is a global brand, a significant majority of its African market is in Nigeria. So a significant amount of the latest funding is expected to be invested into the Nigerian business.
According to the company, the funds will be used to develop driver face verification and use machine learning to prevent potential incidents.
Flutterwave ($35 million)
Flutterwave is a payment technology company focused on helping banks and businesses provide seamless and secure payment experiences for their customers.
The startup is one of the fastest-growing payments companies in the world. It has processed close to $2 billion in payments and 25 million transactions across over 33 African countries.
This year, Flutterwave raised $35 million to expand its operation across Africa. In total, it has raised over $65M in funding across 11 rounds by 23 known investors such as Ycombinator Continuity Fund and Greycroft.
Lumos ($35 million)
Lumos is a Clean Energy company which is a leading provider of high-quality solar home systems and which hopes to make them accessible to Africans.
By offering Solar Power as a Service, Lumos offers homes and small businesses a simple and affordable way to pay for electricity in small instalments using their mobile phones.
This year, Lumos raised $35 million to accelerate the spread of its electrification solutions in Nigeria. In total, it has raised over $212M in funding across 5 rounds by 7 known investors such as the United States International Development Finance Corporation.
InfraCredit ($27 million)
InfraCredit is a Nigerian startup which guarantees the credit quality of debt instruments (mainly in the form of bonds) issued to finance infrastructure assets in Nigeria.
This year, the startup raised $27 million in an investment round led by InfraCo Africa to unlock more infrastructure investments that will stimulate economic growth and market development.
Accelerex ($20 million)
Global Accelerex Limited is a financial technology company focused on delivering digital payment solutions and services to customers across the sub-Saharan African region.
Founded in 2008, the startup which ranked as the Number 1 Payment Terminal Service Provider in Nigeria in 2018 and 2019, supports 95% of Nigerian banks and over 90,000 Merchants across the 36 states in the country.
This year, the company has raised $20 million in a funding round led by African Capital Alliance.
Others startups that raised significant amount of funds include BITFXT ($15 million), Aella, TradeDepot and Kuda Bank that all raised $10 million each.
Kudos to the startups that raised the stakes in 2020!
Get the best of Africa’s daily tech to your inbox – first thing every morning.
Join the community now!