Note #11: April 22 - May 5 2017

Context and Thoughts

It’s been a busy few weeks for startup funding and acquisitions in Africa: The breakout acquisition that everyone has been talking about is the $100mm+ cash acquisition of GetSmarter [ZA] by 2U [US], followed by the smaller Computicket [ZA] acquisition of Entry Ninja [ZA]. Recent funding highlights include two significant $1mm+ Series A rounds: Cars45 [NG] raised $5mm from Frontier Car Group [US], and Mobenzi [ZA] raised $1.15mm from Vumela Fund [ZA].

Industry and Ecosystem News

  • Portraz [ZW], Zimbabwe’s telecom regulator, has launched a $25mm tech fund and opened funding applications for startup innovators through May 30 link link2

  • GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund announced 7 African startups in their first round portfolio, each receiving up to £250k in funding: Kytabu [KE], Optimetriks [KE], Prepclass [NG], Raye 7 [EG], Safemotos [RW], Twiga Foods [KE], UX / Biscate [MZ] link link2 link3

  • South Africa’s Cape Craft and Design Institute (CCDI) and Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) announced up to $37k seed funding each for 7 biotech and agtech projects link

  • Mastercard [US] Center for Inclusive Growth announces $1mm grant over 3 years to Inkomoko Hub [RW] to support small businesses, including startups link link2

Deals, Startups, and More

  • Education startup GetSmarter [ZA] sells to online university education platform 2U [US] for $103mm cash + $20mm cash earnout provision link link2

  • Used car sales platform Cars45 [NG] raises $5mm Series A from Frontier Car Group [US] link

  • Fintech startups [NG] and Olivine Technology [KE] raised $50k each from Village Capital [US] at conclusion of FinTech Africa 2017 link

  • Mobenzi [ZA] closes ~$1.15mm Series A round from Vumela Fund [ZA] link

  • Sports event ticketing startup Entry Ninja [ZA] acquired by Computicket [ZA] (terms undisclosed) link link2

  • Grocery e-commerce startup GoodsMart [EG] raises $750k from Algebra Ventures [EG] link

  • Identity protection startup Civic [US] to open Cape Town engineering office following recent relaxation of IP controls in South Africa link