VC money moved through the African startup landscape in the month of March as at least 45 organizations received funding either through grants, pre-seed, seed or series raise on the continent.
In Nigeria, a total of 7 startups raised funding with each funding greater than $1 million. Flutterwave raised the highest funding and it was for the sum of $170 million. Flutterwave’s funding is also the highest among all the funds raised by tech companies across the continent.
The other startups that raised funds in Nigeria include Bankly, Havenhill, Kuda Bank, Kwik Delivery, Termii and Afriex. Bankly is a female-led fintech startup and it raised $2 million which was announced on March 24. The round which was led by Flutterwave and Vault is expected to help the startup scale to other states in Nigeria.
Kuda Bank raised $25 million in Series A funding led by Peter Thiel’s Valar Ventures, with participation from Target Global. With the fund, Kuda is aiming to expand across Africa and possibly to the UK. Termii raised $1.4 million on March 19 led by Future Africa and Japanese VC, Kepple Africa Venture. This fintech startup will be venturing into North Africa, starting with Algeria.
Afriex which facilitates money transfer between the US and African countries raised $1.2 million. The raise was announced on March 23 and will help the startup to capture other African countries with its service.
Havenhill, a cleantech startup, is another startup that raised funding. The clean energy company raised $4.6m from Chapel Hill Denham Nigeria Infrastructure Debt Fund (NDIF). The raise will be used to aid the construction of 22 smart solar mini-grids in Nigeria.
Kwik Delivery is the 7th Nigerian startup to have raised fund above $1 million. It provides logistics service to businesses and individuals and raised a pre-Series A round of $1.7 million.
In all, Nigerian startups raised $205.8 million.
The only women-led startups to have been included in the raise are Bankly and Termii. In other words, 71.42% of the startups that raised funds are led by men and only 1.65% of the entire raised funds went to startups with at least 1 female founder.
12 startups in other parts of Africa raised $58.1 million
A total of $58.1 million was raised by 12 startups in 7 other countries across Africa. The largest raise was $15 million by South Africa’s Adumo. The fintech company is South Africa’s largest independent payments processor.
Besides Nigeria, other countries that raised funds include South Africa, Zimbabwe, Congo, Morocco, Kenya, Ghana and Egypt.
The second-largest raise of $12 million was also raised by South African startup, Kandua. The startup offers home services-on-demand through an online marketplace. Morocco’s Mubawab raised $10 million to develop its proptech service. The startup lets sellers and landlords list their properties for rent on its online marketplace in Morocco and Tunisia.
SA’s Flex Club and Egypt’s Koinz raised $5 million and $4.8 million respectively. Flex Club allows its users to purchase vehicles that are then matched with Uber drivers who pay a weekly rental charge to the investor. Koinz, is focused on restaurants and it helps them to collect and track real-time data on customer behaviour, improve customer satisfaction and make smarter business decisions.
Ethiopia’s ArifPay and SA’s Ukheshe raised $3.5 million and $2 million respectively. Ukheshe helps banks and telcos to provide digital banking and payment services to small, medium and micro-businesses. ArifPay is also a fintech startup and is the first one to obtain a license from the National Bank of Ethiopia. Its services will allow ATM cardholders to make electronic transactions on their smartphones.
Ghana’s Redbird and SA’s Nomanini raised $1.5 million each. Redbird is a decentralized healthtech startup that helps pharmacies to carry out tests on patients and make the results readily available whenever it is required. Nomanini’s platform allows informal merchants and micro-entrepreneurs in emerging markets to sell digital goods such as airtime and prepaid electricity.
Kenya’s Powered By People raised $1.5 million to scale its e-retail business that enables African manufacturers of arts and crafts to supply global brands. Zimbabwe’s Farmhut is the last of the 12 and it raised $100,000. It is a straight-from-the-farm marketplace that lets people buy produce while it is fresh.
Besides the funds that were disclosed, there were other startups that received amounts of money that were undisclosed to the public. 7 startups got undisclosed amounts of funding from the $2 million Jua Kickstarter Fund. They are GrowAgric, Side and Xetova from Kenya; Powerstove and Whispa from Nigeria; Jirogasy is from Madagascar and Bryt-Knowledge is from Zimbabwe.
Besides those that raised funds in Nigeria, startups in other sectors besides fintech also attracted funding in March as well. Mubawab and Kandua are in the proptech sector while the others are spread across the fintech, healthtech, e-commerce and service-on-demand sectors.
Together, African startups raised a total of $263.9 million. With $205.8 million, startups in Nigeria contributed 77.9% of the $263.9 million. The amount raised by Africa’s most populous country is largely due to Flutterwave’s $170 million raise.
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