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Startup IroFit finds investment via VC4Africa & closes USD 600K seed round!

By Miguel Heilbron on November 11, 2014

Congrats to the IroFit team for finding investment via VC4Africa and today closing their USD 600K seed round!!

Nigerian-Finnish internet-free mobile payment startup IroFit has raised USD 600K in seed funding from a group of investors including leading Nordic early-stage VC firm Inventure, major Finnish payments industry software development company Solinor, and Nigeria based industry expert and angel investor Rasheed Olaoluwa.

“The angel investor from Nigeria, Rasheed Olaoluwa, found us through our VC4Africa venture profile, then reached out to us”, says Omoniyi Olawale, IroFit’s Founder and CEO. “He was the first investor we got in the group. So that says something about the impact VC4Africa is making.”

IroFit is one of the 40 startups that was selected to pitch their new products at DEMO Africa two months ago. Investor Rasheed Olaoluwa [...]

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WINNERS ANNOUNCED! – Orange African Social Venture Prize 2014 finalists prepare for investment on VC4Africa

By Miguel Heilbron on November 3, 2014


Version en français plus bas / See below for French.

UPDATE: WINNERS ANNOUNCED! 

Orange announced the three winners of the Orange African Social Venture Prize during the AfricaCom Awards ceremony held in Cape Town, November 12. Congratulations to the entrepreneurs!!

The first prize was awarded to Modisar, the Station Energy Ivoire project was awarded second prize, the third prize was awarded to the Senegalese company Bouquet Pass Santé. Finally, a “favourite project” was also selected by visitors of the Group’s web portal StarAfrica. Over 20,000 visitors voted for the Ivorian project “Pubcell”. And the special Orange Partner API prize was awarded to Mewanko Farm, a project that involves the creation of an online platform to enable the sale of agricultural products on both urban and international markets.

In addition [...]

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Ghana Angel Investor Network invests 110K USD in education tech startup Revo

By Miguel Heilbron on October 31, 2014

Congratulations to VC4Africa member Revo and the Ghana Angel Investor Network (GAIN)! They recently closed an investment deal of around 110K USD, GAIN’s first investment!

The Ghana Angel Investor Network (GAIN), a network of high net worth individuals, launched with only 6 founding members and today has an impressive network of 24 investors, with a keen interest in startups. The GAIN network is diverse with investors having interests in sectors such as technology, agriculture, education and healthcare.

GAIN was established by Ghana’s Venture Capital Trust Fund to bridge the funding gap for very early-stage companies. The Venture Capital Trust Fund (VCTF) recognized the need to provide a platform for established entrepreneurs to assist aspiring entrepreneurs with capital and mentorship.

Revo is a Ghana based technology [...]

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New USD 15-20k investment in Nigeria’s fuel station app E-Pump

By Miguel Heilbron on October 6, 2014

Congrats to entrepreneur Ayodeji Ogundiran, founder of VC4Africa registered company E-Pump, and their investors including VC4Africa member Michael Oluwagbemi, who just closed a new seed investment deal!

The seed investment round in E-Pump was announced by LoftyInc Allied Partners Limited, operator of the Wennovation Hub high-impact start-up acceleration program in Lagos, Nigeria. Michael Oluwagbemi, Executive Partner at LoftyInc, told VC4Africa “the invested sum is within the $15,000 to $25,000 bracket that we invest in early stage teams, with the option to invest up to four times the initial invested amount in a follow up round.” The investment was syndicated among a group of investors affiliated with the venture and product development firm based in Lagos.

At Wennovation Hub, LoftyInc provides “everything from management consulting [...]

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EXCLUSIVE: Africa’s payment venture SimplePay secures SeedStars World’s Best Startup prize money!

By Miguel Heilbron on September 15, 2014

While an Asian startup was announced as the winner of the Seedstars 2014 “Best startup in the world” competition, in the end an African startup secured the prize money! Congrats to VC4Africa member Simeon Ononobi, CEO of SimplePay! He shares his story below. 

Congratulations on the funding you secured! What did you win?

“SeedStars World’s first prize is up to 500,000 USD in seed investments from European investors, managed by SeedStars. Because we didn’t need up to that for seed funding we negotiated for just 300,000 Swizz Francs, around 330,000 USD.”

What happened exactly?

“After a grueling deliberation by the jury members at the SeedStars World finale, actually Flitto from South Korea was announced the winner – and we got second place. But then it became clear [...]

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DEMO Africa alumni company Fairwaves joins prestigious Techstars accelerator, shoots up ‘mobile network in a box’

By Miguel Heilbron on September 8, 2014

Today’s featured member of the VC4Africa community is entrepreneur Alexander Chemeris, CEO and Founder of the company Fairwaves, one of the great 40 startups launched at DEMO Africa last year.

Fairwaves’ innovation is making mobile communications affordable in rural and remote areas with a ‘network in a box’. They just raised new investments and got accepted at the prestigious Techstars accelerator in Boston, US!

Congratulations on the new milestones! What have you raised so far, and what are you still looking for?

“So far, we raised USD 240,000 from nine business angels in the previous round. We are currently raising another USD 400,000 as a bridge round. This includes taking USD100,000 from Techstars’ Star Power Fund and raising another USD 300,000 from angels on the [...]

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Ghana’s messaging startup Saya acquired by US based mobile services company Kirusa

By Miguel Heilbron on August 21, 2014

Congratulations to VC4Africa member Saya, acquired by US based mobile services company Kirusa!

Do you have an investment success story to share with the whole VC4Africa community too? Let us know!

“In launching Saya, we wanted to create a world class product that was made by Africans, for Africans,” says Saya’s CEO Robert Lamptey.

Robert Lamptey and Badu Boahen are the two Ghanaian entrepreneurs who founded Saya in 2011. They are both graduates of the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) program in Accra. Saya provides a chat application that cuts the costs of SMS and also gives low-end phones users access to functionalities such as Facebook chat, group discussions, location-based chat, and exchange of multi-media. Today their apps are used in over 35 countries worldwide. Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, India, and [...]

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South Africa’s 8Bit raises USD 110K from local & international angel investors

By Miguel Heilbron on August 11, 2014

Congratulations to VC4Africa member 8Bit and the investors (also including a VC4Africa member) with whom they secured a new round of investment deals!

Also have an investment success story to share with the whole VC4Africa community? Let us know!

Tom Kennedy, founder and CEO of South Africa based advertising platform 8Bit, announced the company closed a round of USD 110,000, consisting of deals with multiple South African and international investors.

The company went through 88mph’s Cape Town accelerator program and raised funding from them earlier this year. Also VC4Africa member Ernst Hertzog of early stage angel fund Action Hero Ventures and Neil Emmerick of hotel booking platform Nightsbridge, both based in South Africa, committed investments.

After additional investments secured at a Net Prophet [...]

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Kenya’s BookNow secures USD 75k funding round from 10 angel investors

By Miguel Heilbron on August 5, 2014

Congratulations to VC4Africa member BookNow! They secured USD 75k in funding from 10 angel investors (some of which are in the VC4Africa community as well).

Also have an investment success story to share with the whole VC4Africa community? Let us know!

Nairobi-based bus ticket aggregator BookNow has closed a USD 75k round from 10 angels investors including local businessmen Mahendra K.D. Shah, Ravi Shah, Ritesh Doshi and four investors from their incubator 88mph. The company will use the funds to accelerate growth within the Kenyan market, by improving its product offering, and hiring customer support staff.

BookNow originally received seed funding from and was part of 88mph’s 2013 Nairobi accelerator program. The company was founded by Francis Gesora and Michael Nguru in August 2013 and aggregates bus tickets [...]

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Nomanini gets USD 450k funding boost from South Africa’s tech venture capital fund IDC

By Miguel Heilbron on August 4, 2014

Congratulations to VC4Africa member Nomanini! After they secured their series A round in 2012 and series B round earlier this year they announced a new funding boost today.

Also have an investment success story to share with the whole VC4Africa community? Let us know!

VC4Africa member and emerging markets payments innovator Nomanini today received additional funding from South Africa’s tech venture capital fund Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to enable its expansion into international markets. Nomanini has been granted ZAR 4.8 million (USD 450.000) which will enable it to scale operations internationally, streamline its fulfilment process and recruit the talent needed to keep up with its growth.

Nomanini is a South African-based technology solutions provider dedicated to building the tools needed to facilitate cash payments [...]

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