Last week saw the announcement of Nomba’s $30 million Pre Series B, which has increased the company’s valuation to a whopping $150 million, the launch of Fingo Africa’s youth-focused neobank in collaboration with Ecobank, and Proparco’s investment to help support the Egyptian fintech sector.
Let’s dive straight into the details.
Nomba, a Nigerian payment service provider, has raised $30 million in a pre-Series B funding round led by Base10 Partners, with participation from Helios Digital Ventures, Shopify, Partech and Khosla Ventures. Previously known as Kudi, Nomba was founded in 2016 by Adeyinka Adewale and Pelumi Aboluwarin. The company provides businesses with POS terminals and banking tools to help them accept payments, both offline and online, manage sales, and run their businesses more efficiently.
The funding will help with the delivery of tailored solutions for specific business services. In addition, the company hopes to expand into other African countries in order to replicate its success in the Nigerian market.
Helpoo, an Egyptian mobility solutions platform, has received an undisclosed investment from Morni, a Saudi Arabia-based counterpart, in a transaction facilitated by Exits.me, an M&A advisory firm. Founded in 2022, Helpoo is an integrated tech-enabled service application in Egypt that provides timely, high-quality motor vehicle insurance inspections, insurance claim management, and roadside assistance.
Morni’s long-term plan is to invest $10 million in Egyptian mobility startups through Exits.me in order to penetrate the currently unsaturated market and expand its service offering across the entire region.
Fedi, a Nigerian cryptocurrency startup, has raised $17 million in a Series A funding round led by Ego Death Capital and co-invested in by Kingsway Capital, TBD, Timechain, and Trammell Venture Partners. Founded in 2022 by Obi Nwosu, Eric Sirion, and Justin Moon, Fedi develops technology to aid in the global adoption of Bitcoin. The main product of the company, its mobile app, is intended to help billions of people use Bitcoin securely, privately, and scalably. Fedi’s alpha version will be available to builders later this month, according to the company.
Grants & Prizes
Ugandan Karpolax took second place with its nanotech solution that allows fruits and vegetables to stay fresher for longer without losing nutritional value. The third prize of $150,000 was won by IRRI-AfricaRice‘s innovation that helps rice farmers protect their crops from flooding.
Kuronga, based in South Africa, was also awarded $100,000 for the most innovative use of Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies for its machine learning and machine vision mobile app. The solution employs artificial intelligence to connect farmers with buyers while also making it easier to validate crop quality.
COOL LION, a start-up based in Côte d’Ivoire, won the $100,000 People’s Choice bonus prize for the most transformative idea as voted on by the public. The company offers cooling-as-a-service solutions for various industries (agriculture, fisheries, and so on) that are powered by renewable energy.
Fingo, a Kenyan fintech, has launched a neobank in partnership with Ecobank Kenya, a Pan-African financial institution. Founded in 2021 by James da Costa, Ian Njuguna and Gitari Tirima, Fingo was launched with the goal of providing financial services to Africa’s rapidly growing young population.
Users of the Fingo Africa app will be able to open a bank account in under 5 minutes and gain access to services such as savings, smart spending analytics, financial education, and free peer-to-peer transactions.
Proparco has announced an investment in DisrupTech Ventures‘ early-stage venture capital fund to support development in Egypt’s fintech sector and expand access to financial services in the country. The fund received $36 million in funding from a variety of investors, including DFIs, Funds-of-Funds, and family offices, with Proparco contributing $5 million. DisrupTech intends to use the funds to provide seed capital to 28 Egyptian startups primarily focused on financial technology services.
Proparco’s investment in DisrupTech is part of its Venture Capital program, which has invested over €120 million in African early-stage companies and venture capital funds since 2020.
Launch Africa, a Pan-African venture capital firm, intends to launch a $75 million fund to invest in African tech startups. The fund, which is set to launch in July, will target 80 to 100 companies across the continent.
The frontier venture capital firm, which regularly invests in markets other than the Big Five (Nigeria, Egypt, Kenya, South Africa, and Ghana), intends to invest up to $1 million in viable businesses to help them scale.