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The US$10M Club: African Startups That Have Raised More than US$10M in 2019

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Funding Report Briefs 2019

The US$10M Club: African Startups That Have Raised More than US$10M in 2019

Raising US$1 million for African startups is now becoming the norm rather than the exception. More than 70 startups in Africa have already raised US$1 million in 2019, according to data collected by MaxBayen.

There’s been a surge in the number of VC’s and angels interested in the African tech ecosystem with more startups attracting larger ticket rounds. This year alone, we already have 15 startups that have netted more than US$10 million in funding, a number almost equivalent to last year’s with only two months remaining to close the year.

Today we highlight African startups and technology companies that have attracted more than US$10 million in funding in 2019 – The US$10 million club.

***“Startup is a state of mind,” – Adora Cheung, Co-founder and CEO of Homejoy.

*** African Startup – Based on the primary market, headquarters and incorporation.

Interswtich (Nigeria) – US$200M

Nigerian-based payment firm Interswitch secured US$200 million from Visa reaching a valuation of US$1 billion ahead of a potential London IPO next year.


Opay (Nigeria) – US$170M

Opay has established itself as a super app in Nigeria providing a range of services including mobile payment, ride/bus-hailing services, mobile loans, and food delivery.

The tech company is owned by Opera Group, the developer of the Opera web browser and Opera News. Founded in 2018, the company has raised US$170 million this year over two rounds. Investors in these rounds include IDG Capital, Sequoia China, Source Code Capital, Meituan-Dianping,  GaoRong, Softbank Asia, BAI, Redpoint, and GSR Ventures.


Andela (Nigeria) – US$100M

Undoubtedly the single largest ticket round by an African tech company, Andela is also one of the best-funded startups in Africa having secured a total of US$181 million to date. This particular late-stage round was raised from several institutional investors led by Generation Investment Management, an investment firm owned by former US vice president Al Gore.

The tech talent startup was recently in the news about a month ago when it announced plans to lay off over 400 staff across Kenya, Uganda, and Nigeria.


BBOXX (UK/Africa) – US$95.7M

BBOXX which designs, manufactures, and distributes plug and play solar systems to enhance access to energy throughout Africa has raised US$95.7 million through multiples rounds of financing composed of a Series D, equity crowdfunding, private equity round and debt financing round.

Its latest round was its single largest ticket round when they raised US$50 million from several investors led by Japanese car giant Mitsubishi.


SWVL (Egypt) – US$42M

The Cairo-based transportation startup raised US$42 million from several venture-capital firms including Sweden’s Vostok, Dubai-based BECO Capital, China’s MSA and Endeavor Catalyst, based in New York.

SWVL, founded in 2018 is one of the most valuable tech companies of the Middle East & North Africa with a valued pegged at US$157 million.

The startup also launched its bus sharing services in Nairobi early this year after raising more than US$30 million in 2018.

Read: Kenyan Startups Raised a Record US$126M in 2018 [Slide Deck]

Twiga Foods (Kenya) – US$35M

Kenya’s B2B food distribution platform Twiga Foods raised US$30 million from several investors led by Goldman Sachs late last month. And this came after raising US$5 million earlier this year from Creadev, a global long-term investment firm wholly funded by the Mulliez family.

The startup has gone through a leadership change this year when Peter Njonjo, who was until recently President of Coca-Cola’s West and Central Africa business and a co-founder of Twiga taking over the CEO’s role from Grant Brooke as they target Pan-African expansion by the third quarter of 2020.


PEG Africa (Ghana) – US$34M

PEG Africa which is based in Ghana provides credit for solar home systems to underserved households in West Africa via a pay-as-you-go financing model, which enables customers to replace poor quality, polluting fuels such as kerosene with solar energy.

The West African based pay-as-you-go (PAYG) solar company raised a US$25 million Series C funding round from several investors led by the CDC group. This was furthered with two rounds of debt financing totaling US$9 million from ElectriFI and CDC.


Kobo360 (Nigeria) – US$30M

Nigerian freight logistics startup Kobo360 secured a US$20 million Series A round led by Goldman Sachs and US$10 million in working capital financing from several Nigerian commercial banks.

The startup was founded in 2017 by Ife Oyedele ll and Obi Ozor and recently expanded to Kenya with plans underway to expand beyond Africa into other emerging markets. Kobo360 uses its tech-enabled digital logistics platform to connect truckers and companies to delivery services.


Lori Systems (Kenya) – US$30M

The Kenyan based logistics startup that connects cargo owners with truck fleets, has secured nearly US$30 million in a Series A round of financing led by Chinese investors Hillhouse Capital Group and Crystal Stream Capital.

Apoletto Asia, the investment vehicle of DST Global founded by Russian billionaire founder Yuri Milner, EchoVC, Timon Capital, Raba, Ryan Peterson (CEO of Flexport), Iyinoluwa Aboyeji (founder of Flutterwave, Andela), Endeavor and others participated in the new round.

Founded in 2016 by Josh Sandler and Ernest Gichini Ngaruiya, Lori Systems won the best show at Startup Battlefield Africa which was held in Nairobi in 2017 banking US$25,000 and an all-expense-paid trip for two at San Francisco to compete in TechCrunch flagship event – Disrupt SF 2018.

Copia (Kenya) – US$26.5M

Copia, a Kenyan e-commerce firm that specializes in supplying products and services to currently underserved consumers in rural Kenya has secured a total of US$28 million this year over two rounds of financing. A bulk of it was raised last month when it secured US$26 million in a Series B funding led by LGT Lightstone alongside Goodwell Investment, Perivoli Innovations, Endeavor Catalyst, and ELEA. 


Daystar Power (Mauritius) – US$26.5M

The Mauritius based solar energy company, Daystar Power closed a US$10 million investment in March this year with Verod Capital Management and Persistent Energy Capital LLC to expand its offering of Solar Power Solution for Commercial and Industrial customers across the region. They also lined up an additional US$16 million in debt financing to facilitate its expansion across West Africa.

This was boosted with crowdfunding round from Trine a Swedish investment platform when it raised US$560,000.


Jiji (Nigeria) – US$21M

Jiji, Nigeria’s largest classified marketplace raised US$21 million in Series C and C-1 financing from several investors led by Knuru Capital. Earlier in the year, the company reached an agreement with OLX to acquire OLX businesses in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda,


Migo, (Nigeria) – US$20M

Migo, a fintech startup offering credit-as-a service to large companies raised US$20 million in a Series B round led by Valor Capital Group, a Brazil-focused venture firm. The round also saw participation from existing investors including The Rise Fund and Velocity Capital. 


AZA – BitPesa (Kenya) – US$15M

AZA, an established provider of currency trading solutions secured US$15 million in debt financing from Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) to catalyze its growth across the region into new markets in the Middle East and across Africa.

In 2018, the startup acquired Spanish based TransferZero, an international money transfer solution which is now a product within AZA which rebranded from BitPesa to house TransferZero, their B2B2C product and BFX, their B2B over-the-counter platform.


mPharma (Ghana) – US$13.5M

mPharma raised US$12 million Series round led by 4DX Ventures. This was boosted by a US$1.5 million grant funding after winning the 2019 Skoll Awards for Social Entrepreneurship.

The startup then went ahead to acquire Haltons, Kenya’s second-largest pharmacy chain. The deal saw the six-year-old startup taking control of 20 Haltons stores located in Nairobi and Mombasa.

Read: Africa’s Hottest Startups That Have Raised More Than US$5M in 2018

Tyme Bank (South Africa) – US$13.3M

The exclusively digital retail bank from South African secured approximately US$13.3 million (R200 million) from African Rainbow Capital (ARC) and Ethos Private Equity in a private equity round.

Founded in 2012, the Tyme bank has to date signed up over 400,000 customers on its digital platform which offers a transactional account, money transfer service, savings account and educational App.


PayitUp (Zimbabwe) – US$13M

The FinTech startup from Zimbabwe banked US$13 million Series-A investment from London’s Thawer Fund Management.

Founded in 2017 by Aretha Gonyora, Kenneth Tafadzwa Matikizha and Ronald Tapfuma Rwodzi, Payitup operates as a payments startup.


Tugende (Uganda) – US$13M

Tugende, which specializes in the leasing of motorcycle taxis, recently raised US$13 million from undisclosed sources with the support of Verdant Capital. Of this total, US$2 million has been disbursed so far. Tugende has 14,000 active leases and a loan book of US$13.7 million as of September 2019, up four-fold since January 2018. .”


Adzily (Egypt) – US$12.2M

The Cairo-based indoor advertising platform raised $12.2 million from Al-Tharawat Private Investment Holding Company, a Saudi investment company. It is one of the largest-ever rounds raised by an Egyptian startup.


RapidDeploy (South Africa) – US$12M

RapidDeploy, whose cloud-based software enables public safety officials to reduce emergency response times and improve situational awareness, raised US$12 million in Series A financing in February this year.

GreatPoint Ventures and Samsung NEXT provided the Round A funds, enabling RapidDeploy to accelerate the development and deployment of its Cloud Aided DispatchTM platform.


FairMoney (Nigeria) – US$11.1M

FairMoney, a FinTech startup based in Paris and operates in Nigeria, raised US$11.05 million from Flourish Ventures and associates of DST Global and its existing investors (Newfund, Speedinvest and Le Studio VC) to facilitate access to microcredit in Nigeria.

FairMoney through its app provides a complete digital banking solution allowing users to open a bank account, make payments and access loans.

The article will be constantly updated to reflect any new funding activities within the scene. Kindly reach us on for any clarification and information regarding this article.

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