Two African startups have secured funding from an investment firm, Investisseurs & Partenaires (I&P), in what appears to be the first set of funds released from the coffers of the investment firm’s IPAE 2 Fund – capital machinery that is believed to be worth up to USD 59 Mn. The exact amounts disbursed to the respective startups in investments are yet to be disclosed.
Amongst the benefitting startups are CoinAfrique; a Senegalese fintech startup, and Kenya’s African Management Initiative (AMI). Established in 2015, CoinAfrique is a mobile platform that enables users to buy and sell products within its community of users. AMI, on the other hand, is a workplace learning company that combines both online and in-person training in reaching out to a considerable number of people in some African countries.
Having launched in 2014, AMI will be looking to put the funds to use in the area of expanding its reach in markets where it already has a presence, as well as drive entry into new ones. Their Senegalese counterpart, CoinAfrique, who have also selected to benefit from this initial round of disbursements from I&P’s IPAE Fund 2, is believed to have put the strengthening of its team in markets where it is operational on the front burner, with regards to what the funds will be put into. I&P also claims investment in Afribon; a Pan-African food flavor development company.
“More and more, we meet companies such as Afribon, AMI or CoinAfrique, aiming for multi-country expansion. Besides, African companies are increasingly integrating new technologies into their service offering or business model,” commented Jérémy Hajdenberg, Chief Investment Officer at I&P, with respect to the development.
Since coming into existence over a decade ago, I&P can be said to have demonstrated a commitment to supporting the growth and development of a sustainable and dynamic private sector in Sub-Saharan Africa. Last December, the investment firm is reported to have announced the first close of the IPAE 2 Fund; a fund that can be considered as having its sights on making investments in small and medium-sized African enterprises. This development, thus, represents the first investments made by the fund.
Investments into around 30 to 40 startups and SMEs that are operational in Sub-Saharan Africa are believed to be targeted by the IPAE 2 Fund throughout the next five years, with a particular interest in West, Central, and East Africa Africa, as well as Madagascar. And with a second closing worth between USD 80.8 Mn and USD 86.6 Mn set to be announced by the end of this year, that vision might just come to fruition.
The investment into the African startups is coming just weeks after I&P Développement 2 (IPDEV 2); an investment company managed by Investisseurs & Partenaires, announced the closure of an investment round which saw it eclipse its initial funding targets by raking in up to USD 24.4 Mn in investments.