ID validation startup Smile Identity secures US$7m series A funding to improve its services

NIGERIA – Smile Identity, which enables ID verification and KYC compliance through artificial intelligence (AI) designed for African faces and identities, has secured US$7 million in Series A funding to improve its services and expand across more markets. Smile Identity launched in 2017 with a mission to make it easy for Africans anywhere to quickly and easily prove their identity online and provide businesses with the tools and software they need to automate customer onboarding, verify identities, and prevent fraud. To standardise identity verification across the continent and provide a…

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Ecommerce platform Maxab raises US$40m Series A round to expand to other markets

EGYPT – Maxab, a Cairo-based B2B ecommerce platform, has announced that it has raised US$40 million in a Series A round led by RMBV, a North African-focused impact investor. IFC, Flourish Ventures, Crystal Stream Capital, Rise Capital, Endeavour Catalyst, and Maxab’s previous investors Beco Capital and 4DX Ventures all participated in the purchase. The startup intends to use the fresh funding to grow across Egypt’s major cities by the end of the year, followed by other markets in the region. According to the Egyptian firm, the funds will be utilized…

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Fintech company Zeepay raises US$7.9m Series A funding

GHANA – Zeepay, a fintech company, has announced the completion of a US$7.9 million Series A funding. The funding is a hybrid of both equity and balance sheet funds to support its operations. The fundraise was led by I&P, an impact investing group with over US$250 million in assets under management in the amount of US$3 million, and supported by ARK Holdings, a privately held family investment portfolio on behalf of Andrew Takyi-Appiah (Managing Director) and Zoe Takyi-Appiah in the amount of US$800,000. GOODsoil VC, an African-focused early-stage venture capital…

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Early-stage VC fund Seedstars Africa Ventures secures commitment from PE firm LBO France

SOUTH AFRICA – Early-stage venture capital fund Seedstars Africa Ventures has received a commitment from French private equity firm LBO France towards its US$100 million fund for early-stage African tech start-ups. In 2019, Disrupt Africa reported that Seedstars, a Switzerland-based company focused on entrepreneurial development in emerging markets had partnered with the Paris-based VC firm First Growth Ventures to launch the fund. The fund focuses on financing innovative companies operating in Sub-Saharan Africa in seed and Series A rounds and is just closing its third investment, in an agri-tech company after…

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Digital marketer Trella raises US$42m Series A funding to invest in tech capacity

EGYPT – Trella, a digital platform connecting truckers with freight loads, has completed a US$42 million Series A funding round, including from the venture capital arm of shipping giant Maersk. The funding comprises of US$30 million in equity and US$12 million in debt facilities, for major expansion in the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan (MENAP). The equity element was led by Maersk Growth, the corporate venture arm of global multinational A.P. Moller – Maersk, and Raed Ventures, a Saudi Arabian venture capital firm. Other participating investors include Algebra…

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Teeth-straightening startup BASMA.com closes US$3m Series A funding to scale up operation

MENA – BASMA.com, a teeth-straightening D2C startup, has closed US$3 million Series A funding led by MEVP to scale up its healthtech platform in the MENA region. The funding also saw the participation of SOSF, IM capital and returning investors iSME, Cedar Mundi Ventures and IFA capital. BASMA.com is a digital healthcare platform working on redefining the orthodontics support experience with a chain of digitally-equipped clinics to offer faster and more precise treatments through its licensed partners. It uses ISO and CE certified invisible teeth aligners, 3D-printed in-house, to assist…

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E-commerce startup Sky.Garden raises US$4m Series A funding round to accelerate growth

KENYA – Sky.Garden, an e-commerce has closed a US$4 million round of Series A funding to accelerate its growth. Sky.Garden is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform for mobile commerce that is built specifically for African businesses. Launched in May 2017, its easy-to-use online marketplace allows informal traders, SMEs and established businesses to sell their products. Its technology has been built with a strong focus on African sellers and adapted to tap into the extensive logistics network of informal and structured shipping across the continent. The startup raised a US$1.2 million seed funding round in 2018,…

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Mobility startup WhereIsMyTransport secures US$14.5m Series A extension round led by Naspers

SOUTH AFRICA – Mobility startup WhereIsMyTransport has raised a US$14.5 million Series A extension round as it bids to continue its expansion across emerging markets. Formed in 2016, WhereIsMyTransport is a big data platform for sustainable mobility in emerging markets, which connects and collects data and integrates this information on its open data platform. Its products are used by cities to coordinate and monitor services, operators to integrate their systems, and passengers, who access the platform through apps and endpoints connected to the WhereIsMyTransport platform. The company, which is active in South…

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Renewable energy provider SolarX completes Series A round with funding from EAV

SolarX secures series A financing from EAV

MALI – SolarX, a West African renewable energy equipment provider, has raised additional funding from Energy Access Ventures (EAV), an early-stage fund that invests in decentralized energy companies across Sub-Saharan Africa. The company has also announced that it has completed its Series A round with this tranche, hinting at a staggered close. SolarX Africa said it will utilize this new equity and quasi-equity funding to finance a pipeline of projects for commercial and industrial clients in Mali and Burkina Faso. The firm develops, finances, and offers operations and maintenance services…

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Marketplace platform Homzmart raises US$15m Series A fund for its growth

EGYPT – Egyptian startup Homzmart, the Middle East’s leading furniture and home goods marketplace platform, has closed a US$15 million Series A funding round to help it speed up its already impressive growth. The capital raise was led by MSA Capital, a global investment firm with over US$1.5 billion in assets under management, and Nuwa Capital. Other participating investors include Rise Capital, Impact46, EQ2 Ventures, and Outliers Ventures. The investment takes Homzmart’s total raised capital to a total of US$17.2 million. The Egyptian startup helps customers by providing them with…

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