Issue #106: Burn Manufacturing secures $12 Million, Rivia acquires Waffle, while Thepeer closes down

Last week, there was an unprecedented lull in funding activities across the African startup ecosystem. Only one startup, Burn Manufacturing, made the news for securing funding. In other news, health tech startup, Rivia, has acquired SaaS provider, Waffle, for an undisclosed amount while Nigerian fintech, Thepeer closed down its operations.


Burn Manufacturing

Funding round: $12 Million

Investors: Key Carbon Ltd., Cartesian,

Founded:  2014,  Kenya

FoundersPeter Scott

Products: Burn Manufacturing produces highly efficient biomass, liquid fuel, and electric cookstoves

What Next?: Fuelled by the funding, BURN is set to expand its electric cookstove distributions in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia, and biomass stoves in Nigeria, DRC, and Mozambique over the next couple of years.


Rivia Acquires Waffle

Ghanaian healthtech startup, Rivia recently announced its acquisition of Waffle, a SaaS company also operating in Ghana. The details of the acquisition agreement were not disclosed, however, the intention is to further Rivia’s expansion and accelerate the digitization of its network of primary healthcare clinics while also streamlining its operations.

Waffles specializes in providing software solutions for small and medium-sized businesses. Waffle’s hospital and inventory management software drew Rivia’s interest which led to the acquisition. But now that it belongs to Rivia, it has been rebranded as RiviaOS.

In addition to the acquisition, Waffle’s founder, Victor Nara, will also be taking up the chief technology officer role at Rivia and will be in charge of overseeing Rivia’s new Healthcare-as-a-service solution. This new service will give healthcare providers access to digitized operations such as appointment scheduling, video consultations, e-pharmacy, revenue, and inventory management among many others.

This acquisition has pushed Rivia a step further towards achieving its ultimate goal of becoming the leading network of high-quality primary care clinics in emerging markets.

Other News

Fintech Startup Thepeer Closes Down

In a storyline that further pushes the narrative that Africa is a tough environment for startups to survive, another startup company has folded up within 3 years of operations. Nigerian fintech startup Thepeer has announced its closure of business for the meantime after failing to scale.

Thepeer was founded in 2021 by Michael Okoh and Kosisochukwu Chike Ononye. The company specialized in developing APIs that enabled fintechs and businesses to embed financial products into their websites and apps.

The company enjoyed early success in its operations, securing a $2.1 Million seed round funding within a year of being founded. However, it couldn’t sustain its trajectory and several challenges soon derailed its growth, leading to its eventual closure. 

According to the company’s representative, Thepeer had been on a mission to create something unprecedented and introduce a unique method for transferring funds between digital wallets as well as other forms of bill settlements. However, the product didn’t receive widespread acceptance, it took a lot of effort to get a few customers to understand and accept the system. This situation eventually led to its decline.

With Thepeer closing shop, all remaining funds from the investments raised have been returned to investors while the company has been placed on maintenance mode, with the founders dedicating their energy to maintaining the platform for as long as possible until it gets a new owner.

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