Nigerian online media company, Stears, has raised $600,000 seed funding to expand its media and information products. The funding came from two undisclosed individual investors in Nigeria and Luminate which also participated.
Luminate, a philanthropic organization owned by Omidyar Group, released a statement on Wednesday announcing the deal. According to the statement, the investment is in line with Luminate’s mandate to identify funding opportunities for supporters of free media in West Africa. Part of the statement said:
“We’re pleased to announce our participation in Stears’ seed investment round alongside two other investors.
“Stears has already demonstrated its value in providing accurate news and analysis that enables policymakers, investors, civil society, international development institutions, and Nigerians both in and outside the country to make informed business, economic, and political decisions, and to actively participate in public life.”
The statement further noted that in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, it had become even more expedient to support businesses that provide evidence-based information for the Nigerian audience. In the meantime, Luminate said it looks forward to partnering with Stears.
While reacting to the deal, the management of Stears said the funding is expected to facilitate the company’s work. In other words, the funding will support Stears’ data journalism endeavours. The company plans to recruit more to expand its team whilst rolling out improved media and information products.
Note that Stears was founded in 2017 by Preston Ideh, Abdul Abdulrahim, Foluso Ogunlana, and Michael Famoroti, four Nigerian students who were then studying in the UK.
According to the co-founders, the vision was to provide a real-time and reliable database for Nigerians to access quality information.