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African startups attract over US$70-m in investment

By , ITWeb
Africa , 20 May 2016

African startups attract over US$70-m in investment

Growing international and local angel investor interest in African startups is resulting in tangible investments, according to data from the newly-published 2016 Venture Finance in Africa research.

Conducted by Venture for Capital Africa VC4A, a global peer-to-peer network that brings entrepreneurs and investors together, data from this third edition of the annual research shows that total invested capital more than doubled compared to last year's data - from almost US$27 million to US$73 million, secured by 224 ventures who took part in the survey (48% of total).

Using its portal which has a database that connects supply and demand, the information, network and capital required to enable African entrepreneurs realise their potential, VC4Africa says the average amount invested per venture also increased from US$200,000 last year to US$326,000.

The report captures the performance of early stage, high growth ventures from Africa and the activity of early stage investors across five indicators: job creation, financial performance, investments, early-stage investor activity and ecosystem.

It shows top investment categories to be related to the technology sectors, followed by agriculture, health, finance and energy. It also reveals that ventures that participate in sector events, or join an incubator or accelerator, are twice as more effective in securing capital for their venture.

Data collected in 2015 from 462 ventures across 41 African countries and 140 Africa-focused investors from 25 countries around the world, the research shows that 86% of investors that form part of the VC4Africa community have invested in an African venture.

Research Lead Thomas van Halen says he was not surprised to see a higher percentage of participating investors in African startups, which is similar to last year's results.

"I was mainly intrigued to discover the high amount of new investors in the market with less than 5 investments," van Halen stated. "This implies they are building up their investment portfolios in the near future. One way to do this can be the formation of more -local- syndication opportunities."

VC4Africa co-founder Ben White says the research is conducted annually to address the critical challenge of operating as a founder or investor without quality information which hinders the ability to make informed decisions particularly for those venturing in Africa.

VC4Africa claims that despite the limited sample size, companies captured in the research are increasingly representative of what is happening across the larger African startup ecosystem.

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