Frontier Digital Ventures, which invests in online classifieds businesses in frontier markets with a particular focus on property and automotive verticals and general classifieds has raised US$22.9 million from an an oversubscribed IPO on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX).
Founded in May 2014 and headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Frontier Digital Ventures, owned by Malaysia-based internet group Catcha Group, has a presence in Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Mozambique, Ghana and Morocco among others with sites such as Afribaba.com, a leading general classifieds portal that operates across French speaking markets in West Africa, Kupatana.com, a general classifieds website in Tanzania with a growing presence in Uganda, Moteur.ma, an automotive portal in Morocco, CasaMozambique, formerly ‘Propertymaputo’, a property portal in the East African market of Mozambique, MeQasa.com, a property portal in Ghana, CarWangu is the first automotive portal to be launched in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), AngolaCarro, an early stage automotive portal and the first to be launched in Angola, a country of 21.5 million people, AngoCasa is an early stage real estate classifieds portal in a very early stage market, IMCongo, a property portal the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and ToLet.com.ng, a property portal in oil-rich Nigeria.
According to Shaun Di Gregorio founder and CEO of FDV: “Today marks an exciting and important milestone for Frontier, and we are thrilled to be making our public debut on the Australian Securities Exchange. The strong demand by institutions and professional investors is a strong vote of confidence in Frontier’s growth strategy.”
The firm aims to use the cash raised to accelerate its growth in markets it is already present as well as expand to more markets to become the leading operator of online classifieds businesses in underdeveloped, emerging markets.
This raise puts it against One Africa Media who are in the same markets across Africa as well as Rocket Internet which is spreading quickly in Africa, Middle East and Asia. Naspers is already a giant in most of this markets but its yet to be a true monopoly so there is chance for new players like FDV to get in a fight with them.