Since early 2021, Johannesburg-based startup investment platform Merge has worked with 100 venture capital (VC) investors.
The company’s user base has increased to 3,000, with a thousand entrepreneurs and investors utilizing the platform.
“We have successfully launched a platform that provides access to opportunity for all startups and angel investors, as we continue to improve and grow the experience for these individuals, we have begun setting our sights on working with bigger players in the space, and in doing so have incorporated a new player on our platform, VCs,” Co-Founder and COO, Brandon Bate, said in a statement.
Merge, which is available as an app, connects startup founders with possible investors in order to secure funding.
It also provides direct communication with industry professionals, as well as incentive and promotion programs for platform members.
“As Merge started gaining more traction throughout the continent, we have seen an influx of quality African startups that are looking for Venture Capital finance to take their venture to the next level,” Co-Founder and CEO, Zander Matthee explained.
“We aim to service this need by working with African-focused VCs and funds to take these startups to the world.”
Kingson Capital, CRE Ventures, PlayVentures, Bitkraft, and Ingressive Capital are just a few of the notable VCs who have partnered with Merge.
The company presently operates on four continents. Its goal is to create a global ecosystem for all stakeholders in the startup business.
According to the company, 933 African startups received venture capital funding between 2014 and 2020. Since 2017, the rate of deal-making on the continent has increased at an exponential rate.
Startups reported 319 venture capital deals in 2020, more than double the number reported in 2019. More than a third of all reported deals in the last seven years fall into this category.
At the same time, international capital accounted for 78% of the flow into Africa, while domestic capital accounted for the remaining 28%. Given the economic difficulties caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, Merge believes this is significant. It also stresses the industry’s resiliency and the continent’s potential for growth.
Investors and business owners can join Merge by registering and signing in using an email address to begin communicating with each other.