Black unicorns

A Unicorn Dry Spell In African Tech Is Defying Rosy Predictions

By  |  August 18, 2022

Despite the jitters of a looming recession and an unfolding downturn that has put global venture capital funding in a slump, the steady supply of new tech unicorns has been something of a surprise deviation from the prevailing dynamics, although this is apparently truer for some markets than others.

Globally, the unicorn count appears to be maintaining pace despite headwinds. However, Africa’s bubbly tech ecosystem seems notably absent from the 2022 unicorn scoreboard - at least, so far. And this seems even more conspicuous against the backdrop of last year’s unprecedented showing.

In 2021, five African startups (Flutterwave, Andela, OPay, Wave, and Chipper Cash) acquired their horns in record-making fashion, as industry chatter conveyed excited predictions of more of the same in the coming year.

Those predictions may now appear to have been overly optimistic. The possibility that the blitz of 2021 was a rare event in the African tech trajectory, and not necessarily a sign th...

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