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Angel Investors Plans to List Africa-Focused SPAC Targeting Tech Startup

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Angel Investors, Vishal Agarwal an investment banker, and Raj Kulasingam, a corporate lawyer have stated plans to list Africa-focused SPAC targeting only tech startups in the continent.

A report from Bloomberg said the two early-stage investors have been funding African startups since 2017, invested in over 50 startups, and so far made fivefold returns on their investment. They were also part of Acuity Ventures, an early-stage venture capital fund with stakes in Flutterwave Inc. and Paystack before the firms attained unicorn status.

Vishal and Raj saw the successful investment strategy of Swvl Inc. a Dubai-based ridesharing company merging with Queen’s Gambit Growth Capital, a blank-check company. The two investors believed that listing an African-focused SPAC will provide funds for startups needing capital to expand operations in the continent.

Vishal affirmed that investors have developed a keen interest in Africa, he said, “as there is more interest in Africa, we want to give founders a route to market. A SPAC gives acceleration to our founders and is overall a good thing for the ecosystem.”

The growing interest in African startups has been asserted by Briter Bridges in the 2021 African Investment Report, which released data showing that African startups secured $4.69 billion in estimated funding in 2021, where the tech companies dominated the space by gulping $2.9 billion or 62 percent of the total funding.

However, data from SPAC research revealed that less than 1 percent of the 600 New York-listed SPACs are African-focused.

The biggest investment success recorded by Vishal and raj was with Kuda Bank, the African challenger bank, where they invested $600,000 and exited with 14.5 fold gain or $8.7 million in 20 months. Kuda Bank, a unicorn startup is valued at $500 million and has so far raised $91.6 million in funding.

Vishal said, “when we do dealmaking, we are influenced not only by being able to get in at the right price, but being able to come out, We are very conscious about that, and it’s not always straightforward to come out.”

Dario Giuliani, director of Briter Bridges said, “2021 was a year of recognition, where the newly-available resources and the increasing number of international investors shifting mandates to include Africa met hundreds of promising entrepreneurs to support”.

Vishal and Raj just like every investor identified a growing economy in Africa and the increasing tech-savvy youth population, but also the lack of financial infrastructure. The duo plans to fill this gap by investing in about 20 African startups this year.

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DAI Magister Academy Launched to Support Emerging Market Start-up Founders

First cohort of ten African start-ups completed as Academy unveils broader roll-out

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A new Academy for early-stage companies has been launched by DAI Magister, the boutique investment bank offering full advisory services for transactions within the climate, fintech, tech-enabled commerce and communications sectors.

The DAI Magister Academy is a free service aimed at companies that have already raised at least $2m, and who are looking to raise a larger round, but one that is below DAI Magister’s traditional $30m+ round size focus.

The Academy has already provided this service successfully to its first cohort of ten African companies and is now rolling out more broadly across the African ecosystem and eventually into other emerging markets such as MENA and Pakistan. In addition, the plan is to provide this service to companies in Europe focused on climate tech, where DAI Magister has deep expertise.

Victor Basta, Co-Head, DAI Magister Ltd, stated: “We have developed this individualized program to stand apart from the traditional and more generic set of services generally offered to early-stage companies.  For us the primary focus is to provide free, tailored advice to each specific company.  This means a far more responsive and knowledgeable approach based on local market experience. To date we have run ten companies through the Academy from across Africa and the response has been terrific.

“Our objective is to help founders and start-ups to focus on what that company needs to improve, highlight and/or get right before it raises a larger round.  Founders get one go at this often challenging milestone, so it is imperative they get the basics right to secure a successful next round of fundraising.”

The DAI Magister Academy focuses on three core areas: reviewing and challenging equity stories; reviewing target investor lists and suggesting additional potential investors; and reviewing the company’s financial model and suggesting improvements where necessary.

Individualized support is provided to each company in the Academy, spending time with the team to understand the business and its focus, as well as analyse how it performs against the three core metrics. The output is a specific customised confidential feedback report.

Basta concluded: “For those founders and companies with huge ambition, the DAI Magister Academy is a resource we would urge them to take advantage of.  This service is entirely free with the work being done by the same professionals who advise larger companies through significant fundraises.  The teams therefore have the knowledge and experience of knowing what best-in-class looks like when an ambitious business looks to raise $30m+ and eventually much more.”

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Fintech Startup Carbon Finance Partners Carepay to Eliminate Limitations in Accessing Quality Healthcare Services

Carbon Finance a Nigerian fintech startup that provides access to basic financial services has partnered with Carepay a healthcare startup to provide its customers with discounted services on their healthcare needs.

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Carbon Finance, a Nigerian fintech startup that provides access to basic financial services, has partnered with Carepay a healthcare startup to provide its customers with discounted services on their healthcare needs.

Through this partnership with Carepay in an effort to improve access to healthcare services, Carbon Finance will offer support to customers by offering discounts when payment is made with their Carbon debit cards within the designated Carepay healthcare provider network. These discounts will be received in the form of cashback to their Carbon accounts. 

Speaking about the partnership, Carbon’s Co-Founder Chijioke Dozie Said, “This partnership is a milestone accomplishment as it’s the first brand association of CarePay’s healthcare discount program with a Nigerian fintech company.” 

“At Carbon, we believe our consumers deserve only the best, that’s why we are leveraging a powerful partnership to eliminate financial drawbacks and limitations to accessing quality healthcare. This is one of the many ways we at Carbon show customers we care.”

Also speaking on the partnership, CarePay Nigeria’s Managing Director Yomi Sule said, “This partnership with Carbon is a validation of our healthcare discount business model which allows financial service enterprises to embed healthcare benefits such as discounts, cash backs, and telehealth into their value proposition in order to drive affordability of healthcare services for their customers and brand loyalty for the enterprises.”

“CarePay’s innovative healthcare discount program, which is the first of its kind in Nigeria, has a preferred provider network that includes leading healthcare merchants such as MedPlus Pharmacy, Synlab, Outreach Hospital Group, Smile360 Dental, Lily Hospital Group, Exclusive Dental, Amara Medicare, Shield specialist hospitals, Pure Snow Dental, Bethel Dental, Optilens eye clinic, and hundreds more, from which the discount program subscribers can access sizable discounts negotiated by CarePay.”

“Providing more context to the many benefits that Carbon customers stand to benefit from, Sule also positioned that, “With only 10 million Nigerians, which is less than 5 percent of the population currently covered by health insurance, this creates a great concern.

“By partnering with Carepay, Carbon Finance will offer cashback in form of healthcare discounts to their debit card customers. Healthcare should be affordable, and with a Carbon debit card, customers stand to enjoy up to 25% cash back at designated healthcare providers enlisted in the CarePay healthcare discount program”.

It should be recalled that in 2021, Investors King had reported that Carbon Finance processed ₦96.54 billion ($240 million) payments in 2020.

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Sendy Partners With Meta to Offer Free Training to SMEs in Kenya And Nigeria

Kenyan logistics startup that connects clients to drivers Sendy, has partnered with Facebook parent company Meta, through the Innovation growth hub (IG Hub) to train small business owners and entrepreneurs in Kenya and Nigeria.

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Kenyan logistics startup that connects clients to drivers Sendy, has partnered with Facebook parent company Meta, through the Innovation growth hub (IG Hub) to train small business owners and entrepreneurs in Kenya and Nigeria.

The two-day training which is slated to hold between September 28 and 29 will educate business owners and entrepreneurs on the necessary digital skills and information they need to acquire to scale their business.

Through its partnership with Meta, Sendy disclosed that these SMEs, Small Business Owners, and entrepreneurs will be empowered on how to leverage digital skills using Meta Platforms; Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp to position their business for growth.

They will be trained on how to amplify their business online presence, target customers on social media, as well as creating engaging ads, virtual stores amongst others, on the different social media platforms.

Speaking on the program CEO and founder of Sendy Mesh Alloys said, “Social media has evolved to be a critical enabler supporting the growth of many businesses.

“We believe that this partnership with Meta through the IG Hub will provide a platform for businesses to leverage the power of digital platforms for growth. This also speaks to our continued efforts to empower more businesses using our solutions”.

Also commenting on the program is the CEO of IGHub Daniel Chinagozie who said, “In 2022 Innovation Growth Hub (IGHub) is working with META formerly Facebook to train 8000 Small Business owners in Nigeria, and this IGHub is working with organizations and clusters to reach small businesses and Sendy has shown great interest in their customers and SMEs within their network and is partnering with IGHub to reach Business owners with MetaBoost Training”.

Since its inception, the Meta Boost training has helped thousands of small and medium-sized businesses across Africa, to learn how they can use digital tools to scale their business.

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