Electric motorbike company Ampersand Rwanda secures US$3.5m investment from VC fund Ecosystem Integrity Fund

RWANDA – Electric motorbike company Ampersand Rwanda Ltd has secured a US$3.5 million investment from Ecosystem Integrity Fund (EIF), its largest-ever venture capital fund investment in sub-Saharan Africa. According Ampersand founder/CEO Josh Whale, the deal marks a turning point in global electric transport. “EIF’s support further dispells the myth that electric transport will happen in rich nations first and trickle down to developing countries later, second-hand,” he added. The San Francisco-based Ecosystem Integrity Fund is a sustainability-focused venture capital company, which invests in companies that reduce or ameliorate threats to…

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Fintech Paymob raises US$18.5m Series A round to expand its merchant network

EGYPT – Cairo-based fintech Paymob has announced that it raised US$18.5 million in a Series A round led by Global Ventures, Egypt’s largest-ever Series A round raised by a fintech company. A15 and FMO, the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank, were also involved in the transaction. The company aims to accelerate its expansion to Saudi and other regional markets this year. It will also use the funds to expand its merchant network and further enhance the suite of products. The round is made up of US$15 million in glowing funding and…

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Verdant Capital raises US$9.9m financing for Uganda’s tech-enabled lender Tugende

UGANDA – Pan African specialist investment financial institution Verdant Capital has raised US$9.9 million Series A equity capital for Tugende, a technology enabled MSME lender in East Africa. Verdant Capital is Tugende’s financial advisor and arranger for its equity and debt capital raises The transaction is the most recent for the fintech and financial inclusion investment banking franchise of Verdant Capital. Partech Africa, a member of the Partech Group, a leading global technology venture capital fund, and Enza Capital invested in the US$3.6 million extension round agreed and structured in…

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Tech investment group Prosus to sell 2% stake in Tencent for increased flexibility

SOUTH AFRICA – Technology investment group Prosus, a unit of consumer Internet company Naspers, has announced its intention to sell more than 191 million shares, or 2 percent of its shares in tech behemoth Tencent  valued at about US$15 billion  as it seeks further acquisitions for growth amid Covid-19. Prosus will reduce its stake to 28.9 percent from 30.9 percent in Chinese tech giant Tencent and intends to use the proceeds of the sale to increase its financial flexibility to invest in growth sectors and for general corporate purposes. Naspers…

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Fintech SeerBit partners Wix to empower eCommerce businesses in Africa

NIGERIA – SeerBit, an online payment processing platform, has announced its partnership with Wix, a global SaaS platform, to create, manage and grow an online presence, to empower and scale eCommerce businesses in Africa. SeerBit is a product of Centric Gateway, an innovative Pan-African tech solutions company enabling seamless and secure payments across East and West Africa. This collaboration makes SeerBit a payment gateway for Wix on the African continent, processing payments in local currencies, and giving unfettered access to African businesses to build their unique online presence. This integration…

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Uber, Mastercard boost payment digitalization and financial inclusion across MEA

MEA – Mastercard, an American multinational financial services corporation and Uber, a technology company have partnered to implement a new strategic initiative that will focus on digital payments and advancing financial inclusion in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), reaffirming their long-term partnership. By partnering, Uber will be able to drive digitisation across its business operations by leveraging Mastercard’s single infrastructure to meet all types of payment needs across Uber Rides, Uber Eats, Uber Pass, and Uber for Business. Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President Market Development, Mastercard, MEA explains that…

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Edtech startup Kezakoo secures US$221,000 to complete and enrich its range of products

MOROCCO – Kezakoo, a Casablanca-based edtech startup specialized in tutoring, has completed its first round of financing of 2 million dirhams (US$221,000) to complete and enrich the range of products which it currently offers for the benefit of all high school students in Morocco. The investment was from investment company Witamax One, which was jointly created by the Morocco-based investment firms Southbridge A&I and AXXAM Family Office. The funding will also assist the startup to support its organizational development efforts. Launched in 2019 by the engineering duo Youssef Ghalem and…

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Construction group Stefanutti Stocks sells mining services units for US$5.5m to reduce debt

SOUTH AFRICA – Stefanutti Stocks Holdings, one of South Africa’s leading multidisciplinary construction groups, is selling its mining services division, comprising the materials handling and tailings management sub-divisions, but excluding the contract mining sub-division, for US$5.5 million, the company has disclosed. The buyer, whose name was not disclosed, would pay cash and the deal formed part of the restructuring that Stefanutti was implementing, following the appointment of a restructuring team to formulate a turnaround programme for the group. The restructuring also envisaged the securing of short term funding and the…

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French government to double Air France-KLM stake as part of a recapitalization

WORLD – European Commission regulators have approved a €4 billion (US$4.7 billion) recapitalisation of Air France that could see the French government more than double its shareholding in Air France-KLM.  The French government’s stake in the group will increase from 14.3% to a maximum of 30% as part of the arrangement, Air France-KLM said. The too Dutch government has confirmed that its holding will be diluted to 9.3% from 14%. Dutch flag-carrier KLM supports the recapitalisation measure, the group stated but will not benefit from the €4 billion aid, according to the…

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Tunis based Vneuron completes second fundraising for expansion to new markets

TUNISIA – Vneuron, a Tunis-based company that specializes in software development and IT services, has just completed its second fundraising from Tunisian American Enterprise Fund (TAEF), to conquer new international markets. Tunisian American Enterprise Fund (TAEF) is fully a funded US$100 million fund, backed by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) for a 10-year term after the fifth year. TAEF expects to actively invest through 2027, at which point it would begin a period of winding down through exits and dis-investments. Vneuron did not disclose the exact amount involved…

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