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Top VC TLcom Gets USD 15 Mn Capital Boost From CDC Group For Its African Startup Fund


January 20, 2020

Africa-focused tech venture capital firm, TLcom Capital, has received a funding boost of USD 15 Mn into its TIDE Africa Fund which supports early-stage high-growth startups across sub-Saharan Africa.

The latest capital injection is coming from CDC Group; the development finance institution and impact investor of the United Kingdom. The institution has investments in over 1,200 businesses in emerging economies and a total portfolio value of GBP 5.8 Bn (USD 7.5 Bn).

TLcom Capital, which has offices in Lagos, Nigeria, and Nairobi, Kenya, supports businesses that leverage technology to address African business and consumer challenges in key sectors of the economy such as education, agriculture, transportation & logistics, healthcare, and financial services.

Andela, Kobo360, Twiga Foods, and most recently, uLesson, which have collectively raised no less than USD 250 Mn to-date, are among some of the most prominent early-stage companies backed by TLcom Capital.

The investment from CDC is geared towards supporting some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (UN), particularly goals 8, 10 and 9.

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As laid out in a press release seen by WeeTracker, Nick O’Donohoe, Chief Executive of CDC, said: “The investment in TLcom provides an exciting opportunity for us to support early-stage companies at a critical stage in their growth and deepen the entrepreneurial ecosystem across Africa.”

Founder and Managing Partner of TLcom, Maurizio Caio, commented on the development as follows: “We are proud to be working with a strategic partner in CDC, that recognises the entrepreneurial potential of sub-Saharan Africa and is committed to leverage technology to achieve lasting impact and value generation on the continent.”

TLcom will invest between USD 500 K and up to USD 10 Mn per venture, enabling high-growth companies to achieve scale and attract later-stage funding from global VC investors, regional PE firms, and strategic partners.

By identifying and supporting VC funds backing innovative and highly scalable companies in Africa, CDC can play a catalytic role in supporting the development of entrepreneurial ecosystems.

The rapid growth of these companies will be crucial to absorb the growing working-age population and solve specific market challenges facing businesses and consumers.

TIDE Africa achieved a USD 50 Mn second close in June 2019 and is the first Africa-focused fund raised by the TLcom Capital team.

The diverse team which has operated in the VC space for over 20 years in Europe and Israel consists of four Partners including, Maurizio Caio, Nigeria’s former Minister of Communication Technology, Omobola Johnson, Andreata Muforo, and Ido Sum.

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