The Kenyan division of New York-based Endeavour Global has accepted seven Kenyan entrepreneurs into its fold.
Endeavor Kenya is a subsidiary of Endeavour Global, a not-for-profit organization, supports high-impact entrepreneurs. It has accepted the entrepreneurs into its networks, in a bid to enable them to access the necessary capital and connections required to grow their businesses. The organization expects the businesses to have created north of 25, 000 jobs by 2023.
Endeavor Kenya was launched earlier this July in Nairobi and has since begun to impact the local community of entrepreneurs. IT has secured a KES4.8 Billion investment by Endeavor Catalyst in local fintech, Cellulant, which is run by Mr. Ken Njoroge and Bolaji Akinboro. Other entrepreneurs selected are Paul Mbugua of Eclectics International, Grant Brooke of Twiga Foods, Wandia Gichuru of Vivo Activewear and Bilha Ndirangu and Samuel Gikandi of Africa’s Talking.
Endeavor Kenya chairman and Britam Group MD Benson Wairegi said that the organization has collectively created more than 700,000 jobs and over Sh1 trillion annual revenue. It raised Sh41.3 billion in growth capital in 2016 alone and promises to push for more investments in Kenya “Unemployment is very high among young Kenyans and we need to generate more than 3.9 million new jobs by 2020,” he said. “Endeavor believes that the real heroes of job creation and economic growth are the small subsets of entrepreneurs who scale to contribute the lion’s share of net new jobs.”
He expressed his regret over the limited support tailored for entrepreneurs and companies in this phase of growth in Kenya and added that Endeavour aims to fill this gap.
“We search for, select, and support these entrepreneurs to think big and actualise their vision,” said Endeavor Kenya CEO Fiona Mungai, “As they scale, Endeavor entrepreneurs multiply their impact by inspiring, mentoring, and investing in those that come behind them.” Endeavor, announced its first Sub Sahara Africa investment in Cellulant. Cellulant co-founder and CEO Njoroge was selected as the first entrepreneur to join Endeavor Kenya, shortly after the office’s launch in 2017 along with co-founder Akinboro. Together they have since tapped into Endeavor’s global network to connect with leaders in the fintech space and leverage investor connections to support the company’s fundraising and expansion efforts.
The funding round was led by The Rise Fund, a global impact investment fund managed by growth equity platform TPG Growth that acquired a stake in Cellulant. The investment involved Endeavor Catalyst, Satya Capital, Velocity Capital, and Progression Africa. The deal is the largest of its kind yet, and is solely dedicated to Africa’s fintech and payments space.
“Endeavor is excited to be part of this round for Cellulant,” said Ms Mungai. “Ken and Bolaji have demonstrated that Africa has high impact entrepreneurs who are innovating world-class solutions. We look forward to supporting Ken and Bolaji in their next phase of growth as they emerge as a story of hope and inspiration to other entrepreneurs who are scaling up their businesses.”