MAY 10, 2022
5 min Read
African Tech Weekly Recap: March 7 to March 11, 2022
Welcome to our second weekly recap where we share the most important news of the week in the African Tech Ecosystem 🌍
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🇬🇭 Ghana’s Dash raises $32.8m seed to connect African mobile wallets
- Dash, a Ghana-based unified payments app has announced that it has raised $32.8 million in an oversubscribed seed round to facilitate interoperability for digital payments platforms in Africa.
- The deal, which ranks among the largest in Africa, will help in building a Mastercard and Visa sort of intermediary services for mobile payment wallets across Africa.
- The startup will use the fund to expand to new markets such as Tanzania and South Africa, get the licenses needed to operate there, build out its team, invest in technology, and launch new features.
Per a 2020 GSMA report, sub-Saharan Africa relies heavily on mobile money, with 159 million active accounts across 200 mobile money providers and 100 banks. However, there is a lack of interoperability across these mobile wallets which hinders cross-border transactions. Dash’s idea, like MFS Africa, is to create a network where providers can work together for users and it’s processed over $1 billion since launch in 2020. More so, its seed round is one of the largest of its kind in Africa.
🇺🇬Uganda’s Rocket Health raises $5m for its telemedicine platform
- Rocket Health, a startup working to transform the delivery of medical care using technology in Uganda, has closed a $5 million Series A funding round led by Creadev.
- Launched in 2012, Rocket Health offers online medical consultation, collection of samples, and the delivery of medicines. They also have a USSD service for those without an internet connection too.
- After nearly a decade of operation in Uganda, the startup is now set to scale its integrated digital health solution to more regions across the country and within East Africa over the next two years.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the popularity of telemedicine — an innovative way of getting access and delivering health care using digital devices such as mobile devices and computers — has risen significantly. Per a McKinsey study, telemedicine grew 78 times in April 2020. In Africa, where fewer than 50% of Africans have access to modern health facilities, the budding healthcare tool has equally made new inroads.
🇳🇬 OkHi closes $1.5m seed extension round to accelerate operations
- Smart addressing verification company, OkHi, has raised a $1.5 million seed extension to accelerate its goal to tackle challenges in the sector.
- The capital raised will enable OkHi to expand its team currently operating remotely across Nigeria, Ethiopia, Kenya, and London, with extensive employment in sales, products, and engineering departments to drive consumer and B2B growth.
- The round, which brings the total seed raised by OkHi since inception to $3 million, included investors such as Chapel Hill Denham, Olugbenga ‘GB’ Agboola, Flutterwave’s founder and other executives as well as EXFI, a syndicate of ex-Googlers.
OkHi’s digital infrastructure makes it possible for users, individuals and businesses, to adequately verify addresses of customers and services through smartphones. The service is particularly targeted at banks and fintech companies as it’s useful for KYC compliance but outside the financial services landscape, the smart address verification has use cases in industries such as last-mile delivery, e-commerce, food delivery, and emergency services.
🇪🇬 Naqla raises $10.5m for its Egyptian logistics platform
- Egyptian trucking logistics startup Naqla has raised a $10.5 million pre-Series A funding round led by El Sewedy Capital Holding (SCH), Hassan Allam Holding (HAH), and the Sallam family to allow it to further expand in 2022.
- Founded by Sherif Taher and Samer Sallam in 2017, Naqla is an app-based technology marketplace connecting truck owners with cargo companies.
- The startup’s goal is to modernize and expand Egypt’s supply chain by automating orders between shippers and drivers.
Source: Disrupt Africa
In Egypt and the broader North African region, tech-driven e-commerce and logistics have been on a sensational boom. Naqla for instance has seen rapid growth into more than 35 active zones, overseeing the movement and delivery of over 4.6 million tonnes of cargo so far, and is currently working with more than 400 shippers and 10,500 drivers across Egypt. In late January, logistics provider Milezmore raised $5 million in pre-seed financing.
🇳🇬 Nigeria BNPL startup Klump raises $780k pre-seed funding
- Lagos-based buy now, pay later (BNPL) startup Klump has raised a $780,000 pre-seed funding round to help it launch its flagship “Pay with Klump” product with select partners.
- Founded in 2021 by Celestine Omin and Olufunbi Falayi, who have combined experience building products with Konga, DealDay, Paystack, Andela, Amazon, and H-E-B, Klump offers customers the option to buy and receive their purchases right away and spread the payments over 4 equal installments.
- With its proprietary credit eligibility and fraud detection engine, Klump is able to make an informed credit decision on a customer in less than 3 minutes, with a goal to further reduce the decision time to less than a minute.
Source: Disrupt Africa
A buy now, pay later (BNPL) craze is sweeping the world and Africa’s consumers are certainly up for it despite most people being credit-averse. There’s a sense that consumers on the continent will embrace low or no-interest point-of-sale financing options, going by the rate at which Africans now take on loans at ridiculous interest rates to finance their needs. It’s not surprising to see banks, fintechs, financing companies, payment services providers, and merchants considering how to get a slice of the action.
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