The African Development Bank (AfDB) is set to invest USD 10.50MN in Seedstars Africa Ventures S.L.P. venture capital fund, after the bank’s board approved the decision on Wednesday Jan 17th.
- Seedstars Africa Ventures (SAV), headquartered in Nairobi and Paris, is an early-stage generalist venture capital fund investing in high-growth companies.
- The AfDB will invest USD 7 million from its ordinary resources and USD 3.5 million from the European Union Boost Africa programme.
- The investment will allow Seedstars Africa Ventures (SAV) to raise funds, expand its presence in Africa and attract other investors.
The investment comes just a week after SAV received US $30 million equity investment from European Investment Bank (EIB) Global, in a deal backed by European Union funds. One of the EU funds in that deal, Boost Africa, contributed $10 million of EIB Global’s investment, and is also involved in the AfDB deal.
“The fund’s objectives are in line with those of Boost Africa, which aims to invest in innovative start-ups that are growing strongly and having a positive social impact,” the AfDB said in a statement, “Its investment strategy will strengthen that of the African Development Bank.”
According to the AfDB, the bank estimates that the fund will help create 9,000 full-time jobs, 50% of them for women, and have a significant economic impact.
As a venture capital fund of USD 75 million, Seedstars Africa Ventures targets the start-up and launch phases of businesses. Initial investments are around the EUR 250,000, followed by additional capital injections of €5 million to support growth.
SAV mainly targets sub-Saharan Africa, especially markets less well covered by traditional investors, and has a particular focus on French-speaking countries such as Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, Benin and Cameroon.
- It also has investments in Ghana, Uganda and Tanzania.
- SAV focuses on financial inclusion and the technologies that equip businesses (fintech and insurtech); retail sales and logistics platforms that target the online and mobile consumers market; and health-related technologies;
- Other sectors include pre-paid, off-grid energy; and more generally, the adoption of technology in businesses, particularly in the food-processing industry and value chains.
According to the fund’s website, the company is invested in several companies including Poa! Internet (internet provider, Kenya), Bizao (fintech, Ivory Coast), and Beacon Power Services (energy, Nigeria).