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Home Startups Nigeria’s Ventures Platform closes $46M to back startups in Kenya, Egypt & West Africa.

Nigeria’s Ventures Platform closes $46M to back startups in Kenya, Egypt & West Africa.

by James Musoba
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Ventures Platform has closed $46 million to invest in startups across Africa and do follow-on investments for portfolio companies, up to Series A.

Surpassing its initial $40M target, the oversubscribed fund was raised from global investors including top-tier commercial banks, corporates, DFIs, global institutional investors and HNIs, including Standard Bank, International Finance Corporation [IFC], British International Investment, A to Z Impact, Proparco with FISEA, AfricaGrow a Fund of Funds backed by BMZ [German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, DEG and Allianz, managed by Allianz Global Investors], and others.

According to Kola Aina, Founder and General Partner at Ventures Platform, ‘We are honoured to have the breadth of both local and global investors who have bought into our vision and who equally are bringing immense value to our portfolio. This is a crowning close to an eventful year in which we made substantial advancements both in the tactical and the proprietary interventions that catalyze our portfolio companies. Dotun’s hands-on pan-African experience, from working with both start-ups and institutional investors, brings an invaluable perspective that will help with our continued growth. We look forward to helping our portfolio companies maximise their full potential whilst also consolidating our position as a key and dependable business partner for investors in Africa.

Since the first close of the fund late last year, Ventures Platform has deployed new capital and follow-on capital into companies across various verticals and regions on the continent, such as Remedial Health, Moni Notto, and Chargel. To further consolidate its pan-African reach, Ventures Platform is actively seeking opportunities in regions such as Kenya, Egypt, and French-speaking West Africa.

In addition to the close of the fund, Ventures Platform has made a series of strategic team additions at partnership and senior management level. The VC firm has added accomplished entrepreneur, investor, and former Principal at pan-African VC firm, Novastar Ventures, Dr. Dotun Olowoporoku, as Managing Partner. Dotun’s addition to the partnership brings expertise and new opportunities across areas such as investor relations, corporate governance, international expansion, M&A, and growth marketing to the Venture Platform fold. Prior to joining Ventures Platform, Dotun Olowoporoku had played key roles as a consultant or board observer in Flutterwave, Turaco, TeamApt, among others. He was, up to recently, the Chief Commercial Officer at TeamApt.

In addition, Ventures Platform has appointed another notable new member to further enhance its expert network as it brings onboard renowned technologist and investor, Desigan Chinniah, as a Venture Partner. Having spent his career as a venture capitalist, serving in leadership and advisory roles across a blue-ribbon range of companies, Chinniah will harness his expertise in product innovation, sales intelligence and developer relations to support Ventures Platform portfolio companies.

Since its launch in 2016, Ventures Platform has leveraged its on-the-ground presence on the continent and expertise in corporate partnerships, talent, growth, regulation and operations to strengthen the venture capital ecosystem in Africa, acting as a key partner and conduit for international funds and stakeholders.

The pan-African VC firm has over 60 active investments, including Nomba (formerly Kudi), Reliance HMO, Brass, MarketForce, Mono and Piggyvest to add to the successful exit of Paystack (acquired by Stripe). Whilst focussing on funding market-creating innovations that optimise for non-consumption, Ventures Platform has accrued one of the largest technology start-up portfolios on the continent. Investing from pre-seed stage up to Series A, the fund invests in startups across multiple sectors, ranging from Fintech, Insurtech, Life Science and Health Tech, Edtech and Digital talent accelerators, Enterprise SaaS, Digital Infrastructure Plays, Agritech and Food Security. 

“We are thrilled to partner with Ventures Platform in their journey backing early-stage African startups creating new markets and jobs, while accelerating the continent’s digitization,” said Babacar Seck, Senior Investment Officer for Venture Capital at PROPARCO. This ground-breaking partnership reflects the deep commitment of Proparco to African entrepreneurship in line with the Choose Africa initiative, and is being funded through FISEA, an investment fund of the Agence Française de Développement, that finances African startups and small-medium enterprises through innovative fund managers.”

Ventures Platform’s portfolio companies have to-date gone on to raise more than $1b in follow-on funding. 

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