LG Electronics to open 20 new stores in East Africa expansion drive

EAST AFRICA – South Korean multinational conglomerate corporation LG Electronics is expanding its market footprint in East Africa by opening new shops in four countries in response to the growing demand for home appliances, entertainment and air conditioning solutions.   LG Electronics East Africa now says it will refurbish 20 shops and launch additional ones, in Tanzania, Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya, targeting an increasingly tech-savvy, environmentally conscious consumer seeking premium products to match their lifestyle.  The company is also keen on the growing market for wearables, driven by lifestyle changes due…

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Imvula Education Empowerment Fund acquires 23% of Ellies Holdings for US$1.3m

SOUTH AFRICA – Imvula Education Empowerment Fund Trust has concluded its first investment in a Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed company through its BroadBased Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) agreement with Ellies Holdings. The transaction will see Imvula invest R18.5 million (US$1.3 million) of its capital to acquire more than 185 million ordinary Ellies shares at 10 cents a share, representing a 23 percent stake in the company. Additionally, unlike other B-BBEE agreements, Imvula’s share purchase did not attract any discount to the prevailing market price at the time of closing the deal,…

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Startup MarketForce raises US$2m Pre-Series A to scale its B2B retail marketplace

KENYA – MarketForce, a Kenyan B2B retail distribution platform has raised US$2 million Pre-Series A round to launch in Nigeria and to scale up its RejaReja to more towns in East Africa. The funding was raised from V8 Capital, Future Africa, Greenhouse Capital, Launch Africa, Rebel Fund, Remapped Ventures, and a couple of strategic angel investors as new investors. Y Combinator and existing investor P1 Ventures also participated in the oversubscribed round. The raise brings MarketForce’s total funding to date to US$2.5 million after it raised US$350,000 seed round last year and US$150,000…

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Specialty retail chain Nairobi Business Ventures to acquire 4 businesses for US$27.8m

KENYA – leather accessories retail chain Nairobi Business Ventures (NBV) has announced plans to acquire four businesses in Kenya at a combined cost of Kshs3 billion (US$27.8 million). According to a public statement, NBV intends to purchase 100% ownership in Delta Automobile, a leading heavy commercial vehicle maintenance company in Kenya; 100% ownership in Air Direct, an aviation company set to begin operating in Kenya soon; 100% ownership in Aviation Management Solution Limited, a company that owns a hangar and a building close to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport; and an…

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The Foschini Group launches tech hub to drive its e-commerce growth ambitions

SOUTH AFRICA – Retail clothing group, The Foschini Group (TFG) has launched TFGLabs, its new tech hub to drive its omnichannel and e-commerce growth ambitions. The new TFGLabs is led by Superbalist co-founders and seasoned online entrepreneurs Luke Jedeikin and Claude Hanan, who serve as joint chief omni-officers. Hanan said TFG was on a journey to transform into Africa’s leading high-tech omnichannel retailer. “We are laying the foundations to become the largest, most reliable and most profitable e-commerce destination on the continent via a simplified, customer-centric approach, aimed at maximising group…

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PE firm Adenia acquires leading electrical and solar equipment distributor Herholdt’s

SOUTH AFRICA – Adenia Partners, a private equity firm investing in Africa, has acquired a majority stake in Herholdt’s, a leading distributor of low-voltage electrical products and solar products in South Africa. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Established in 1964, Herholdt’s operates in Bloemfontein, Kimberley and George, and has recently opened branches in Johannesburg and Cape Town.  Herholdt’s supplies a broad product portfolio of 10,000+ items to professionals such as installers, contractors and resellers as well as end-users. Herholdt’s originally focused on the sale of electrical equipment…

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B2B SaaS company MarketForce acquires Digiduka to consolidate distribution of consumer goods

KENYA – MarketForce, an end-to-end retail distribution platform for consumer brands, has announced the strategic acquisition of Digiduka, a digital payments solutions provider which aims to bring informal retailers in Africa into the digital economy. Launched in 2018, MarketForce enables consumer brands to optimise how they deliver essential goods and services to retailers and consumers by bridging the information gap in last mile distribution, while maximising efficiency across the sales and distribution value chain.  The startup’s platform leverages mobile devices by enabling field agents to record all customer interactions as they happen in…

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Glovo launches its first African micro fulfillment center in Nairobi, expands Q-commerce arm

KENYA – Global on-demand delivery platform Glovo, has launched its first micro fulfilment centre in Nairobi, Kenya, as the company expands its ‘Q-commerce’ division -next generation e-commerce. Q-Commerce means that consumers can use Glovo to order from their favourite supermarkets and neighbourhood stores, and from now onwards, they can additionally order from Glovo Market. Glovo Market uses the latest in in-store digital technology and dedicated resources to ensure the quickest possible delivery times with customers receiving their orders in 20 to 40 minutes. The centre is located at AEA Plaza…

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Kenya’s consumer credit platform Lipa Later enters Ugandan market

UGANDA – Lipa Later, a Kenyan consumer credit platform, has expanded into the Ugandan market to enable customers to access credit to purchase products from retailers and supermarkets on monthly instalments. The company, which also has operations in Rwanda, said the new service will enable customers to purchase latest mobile phones, electronics, and furniture. Lipa Later Chief Executive Officer, Eric Muli, said the new service is designed to facilitate Ugandans to own mid to high value goods and upgrade their homes. “We recognize that more often than not, there is…

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PE firm Adenia acquires life sciences distributor Africa Biosystems

KENYA – Adenia Partners, a private equity firm investing in Africa, has announced it has completed the acquisition of Africa Biosystems Limited (ABL), a leading distributor of life sciences and clinical diagnostics equipment in East Africa. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.  Established in 1999, ABL is headquartered in Kenya with subsidiary offices in Uganda and Tanzania. The Company’s instruments are used to conduct research and diagnosis across the animal, human and crop sectors with product applications that span molecular, cell and protein biology and DNA forensics. ABL’s…

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