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Partech Ventures launches $120 million fund for African Startups

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Partech Ventures has launched its Partech Africa fund, which has secured above €57M (US$70M) commitments toward its target size of €100M ($120M), making it the first technology fund of such size from a top tier international VC to be exclusively dedicated to the fast-growing tech ecosystem in Africa.

Partech Africa intends to focus on early stage growth funding, providing €0.5 to €5M initial tickets to talented African teams using tech to address large emerging market opportunities. Partech Africa is a generalist tech fund with target industries ranging from Financial Inclusion (Fintech, InsurTech, new distribution models) to online and mobile consumer services (commerce, entertainment, education, digital services), as well as mobility, supply chain services and digitization of the informal economy.

The fund launches in the context of an emerging and fast-growing market. “Tech VC investment in Africa, with ticket sizes from 200K to $40M, has grown almost 10x from $40M in 2012 to $367M in 2016, and is already growing faster than projected $1B annually by 2020” explains Cyril Collon, General Partner of Partech Africa. “Most investment rounds so far have been led by US or EU based investors. The ecosystem is ready for local players, with African teams being able to finance the best African startups”.

As an integral part of the global Partech platform, Partech Africa will also benefit from the firm’s collective industry expertise and unique portfolio support and business development capability. “With a very hands-on operational team closing more than 70 transactions per year, Partech will bring great value to African founders”, adds Tidjane Dème, General Partner for Partech Africa.  “Moreover, thanks to our global network of corporate partners, our dedicated business development team will expose African startups to European and US markets, enable commercial contracts and long-term strategic partnerships”.

Highly relevant investors rallied around Partech Africa to address this new digital opportunity

The launch of Partech Africa is supported by major financial institutions led by IFC, member of the World Bank Group, and including the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Averroès Finance III (fund of funds managed by Bpifrance and co-sponsored with Proparco).

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“Technology can have a huge transformative impact in Sub-Saharan Africa, which has a vast untapped source of entrepreneurial energy,” said Philippe Le Houérou, Chief Executive Officer of IFC. “Africa’s population is overwhelmingly young—it has lots of people with strong tech skills and innovative ideas that could improve lives. But they lack the necessary funding. We think the Partech Africa fund will make an important contribution to closing this funding gap and driving entrepreneurship and growth.”

Partech Africa is also backed by corporate investors led by major global mobile player Orange and including leading emerging markets players such as Edenred and JCDecaux Holding.

“As a leading enabler of the African tech Industry, Orange is strongly pushing for next Pan-African digital champions to emerge and grow. Our commitment to Partech Africa is a critical component of our larger Orange Digital Ventures Africa initiative which aims to accelerate the growth and scalability of innovative tech-enabled businesses.” said Pierre Louette, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Orange and Chairman of Orange Digital Investment.

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A new pioneering move from Partech Ventures

This initiative is the latest in a number of pioneering moves made by Partech over the recent years. The firm has been one of the first European VCs to open an office in Silicon Valley, and has since grown to become one of few transatlantic and pan-European players at scale, with teams based in San Francisco, Paris and Berlin.

“We are pleased to be now present on 3 continents as we open our African headquarters in Dakar, Senegal; not just for being global, but for a better and more comprehensive understanding of all tech trends and disruptions” says Philippe Collombel, co-Managing Partner of Partech Ventures. “In many domains we are seeing innovative investment projects led by outstanding African entrepreneurs. They are using digital tools and creative business models to solve major issues affecting large and untapped market segments, and this is only the beginning”.

Onome Ohwovoriole has a degree in Economics and Statistics from the University of Benin and prior to joining Nairametrics in December 2016 as Lead Analyst had stints in Publishing, Automobile Services, Entertainment and Leadership Training. He covers companies in the Nigerian corporate space, especially those listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). He also has a keen interest in new frontiers like Cryptocurrencies and Fintech. In his spare time, he loves to read books on finance, fiction as well as keep up with happenings in the world of international diplomacy. You can contact him via [email protected]

Coronavirus

COVID-19 Update in Nigeria

On the 25th of September 2020, 213 new confirmed cases and 2 deaths were recorded in Nigeria

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The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 58,062 confirmed cases.

On the 25th of September 2020, 213 new confirmed cases and 2 deaths were recorded in Nigeria, having carried out a total daily test of 10,526 samples across the country.

To date, 58,062 cases have been confirmed, 49,606 cases have been discharged and 1,103 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. A total of 494,577  tests have been carried out as of September 25th, 2020 compared to 484,051 tests a day earlier.

COVID-19 Case Updates- 25th September 2020,

  • Total Number of Cases – 58,062
  • Total Number Discharged – 49,606
  • Total Deaths – 1,103
  • Total Tests Carried out – 494,577

According to the NCDC, the 213 new cases are reported from 17 states- Lagos (51), Plateau (51), FCT (29), Rivers (18), Ondo (12), Oyo (9), Osun (8), Gombe (7), Ogun (7), Kaduna (5), Enugu (4), Edo (3), Jigawa (3), Kano (3), Benue (1), Delta (1), Sokoto (1).

Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 19,174, followed by Abuja (5,644), Plateau (3,373), Oyo (3,248), Edo (2,620), Kaduna (2,389), Rivers (2,305), Delta (1,801), Ogun (1,796), Kano (1,737), Ondo (1,620), Enugu (1,289), Ebonyi (1,038), Kwara (1,028), Abia (881), Gombe (864). Katsina (848), Osun (826),  Borno (741), and Bauchi (692).

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Imo State has recorded 566 cases, Benue (481), Nasarawa (449), Bayelsa (397),  Jigawa (325), Ekiti (317), Akwa Ibom (288), Niger (259), Adamawa (237), Anambra (234), Sokoto (162), Taraba (95), Kebbi (93), Cross River (87), Zamfara (78), Yobe (75), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Western diplomats warn of disease explosion, poor handling by government

Lock Down and Curfew

In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.

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The movement restriction, which was extended by another two-weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.

On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.

On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.

READ ALSO: Bill Gates says Trump’s WHO funding suspension is dangerous

 

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Coronavirus

Lagos launches N5 billion support fund for 2,000 low-cost private schools

The Governor said the facility will benefit low-cost schools with amounts ranging from N500,000 to N5 million.

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Lagos State government has launched a N5billion support fund to help reduce the impact of Coronavirus pandemic on low-cost private schools in the state.

This was disclosed by the Governor of the state, Babajide Sanwo-Olu via his Twitter handle on Friday.

According to him, the educational sector is one of those severely impacted by the pandemic, with schools and vocational learning-centres shut since March.

He said, “With access to funding for privately owned schools and vocational training centres in the state, we are confident that this programme, under the partnership between First Bank Nigeria and Lagos State Education Trust Fund (LSETF) will help accelerate a sustainable return to learning and skills acquisition.”

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He explained that the facility will benefit 2,000 low-cost schools with amounts ranging from N500,000 to N5 million.

“As a responsible Government, we are obligated to provide interventions that would enable learners in schools study in line with the new normal,” the Governor Sanwo-Olu added.

The Chief Executive Officer, First Bank Nigeria, Dr Adesola Adeduntan, said “With this partnership, we are sure that registered educational institutions in Lagos State will have access to funds at subsidised interest rates to meet their needs as they reopen at this auspicious time.”

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Business News

Paga Group relocates to the UK

Oviosu announced that he is very excited about moving to and working with the UK government.

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Paga records over $2 billion worth of transactions in 2019 , Paga acquires Ethiopian-based startup, Apposit, announces Paga subsidiaries

Paga Group has redomiciled from Mauritius to the United Kingdom (UK). The group is the holding company for its operations in Nigeria, México, Ethiopia, and the UK.

This was disclosed by the Chief Executive Officer and founder, Paga, Tayo Oviosu on Friday.

Why it matters: The company took the decision due to bureaucratic challenges it faced last year.

He said, “The laws and courts of Mauritius are not very fast-moving, and the rules are difficult. I’ve had one court case that was eventually thrown out after a year.

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“In the UK it would have been thrown out immediately, and the person would have had to pay us for our lawyer fees.

“Basically, not an easy place to do business. It is more painful than useful. I say stick to good ol’ America or UK or Netherlands or Luxemburg. Where you know there are professionals, and the legal system works.”

Oviosu said he is very excited about the move, looks forward to working with the UK government to promote trade with the UK.

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The Paga Group has raised $34.7 million in funding so far, according to Crunchbase.

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