AUGUST 15, 2022
3 min Read
Investor Updates: August 15 2022
Pastel raises $5.5m to digitize Nigerian SME operations
- Pastel, a Nigerian startup has closed a seed raise of $5.5 million led by pan-African venture capital firm TLcom Capital.
- Global Founders Capital (GFC), Golden Palm Investments, DFS Labs, Ulu Ventures, Plug and Play, and Soma Cap also participated in the seed round. The startup raised a $620,000 pre-seed last year from some of its existing investors.
- The company’s flagship product, Sabi, is a digital bookkeeping app that allows SMEs to monitor and manage their transactions and customers, get insights into their cashflows, issue receipts, and effectively manage customers who owe them.
Digitizing operations for small businesses in Africa is big business! More than $600 billion of consumer goods are sold in Africa mostly through informal channels every year, supplying the vast majority of the 1.2 billion population. In Nigeria, the traditional retail sector is worth more than $200 billion, consisting of over 40 million businesses of varying sizes. However, the industry is faced with several challenges that can be addressed, profitably, with digitization, an opportunity Pastel and its counterparts/rivals are looking to seize.
Egypt’s restaurant-tech BONBELL bags $350k angel funding
- Egypt-based foodtech startup BONBELL has raised $350,000 from a Canadian angel investor.
- Founded in 2022 by Doaa Abdel-Hameed, BONBELL offers a cloud-based online food ordering and delivery system, enabling restaurant managers to handle dine-in orders, table reservations, and curbside delivery.
- BONBELL plans to use the investment to expand its network of restaurant partners to 750 by the end of 2022 while also set on a course of closing a $10 million round.
Egypt’s growing restaurant industry faces significant challenges, mainly due to a fragmented supply chain that results in delayed deliveries and order mix-ups. In the country, many startups have emerged with technology-enabled solutions to help players within this space manage sourcing and procurement while they focus on delivering a high-quality experience and service to their customers. For these startups, the market opportunity in Egypt and the MENA region is huge with the economy growing rapidly and e-commerce seeing increasing adoption.
SA agritech startup Homefarm closes $104k seed round
- PixelBlue, the parent company of South African agritech start-up Homefarm, has raised about $104 000) in seed funding to enable consumers, communities, and businesses to grow more of their fresh food produce on-site where it is consumed.
- Homefarm’s fully automated indoor farms and farming-as-a-service model means anybody can grow their own food. Its systems are based on proprietary designs and technologies, and all its products are developed and manufactured in South Africa.
- The seed funding is to assist the startup in scaling its operations, improving its service offering, and rolling out its marketing and distribution channels.
Nearly 20% of the world population lives in Africa, and yet the continent accounts for less than 2% of the global agrifood tech investment in 2021, leading to missed untapped opportunities by lack of early-stage seed capital. That underlines the importance of Homefarm’s fundraising, which should help the startup scale its solution to a crucial continental problem. With its farms, Homefarm plans to target South Africans looking for easy and reliable indoor farming systems to supply produce all year round to their families, communities, and customers.