Emerging fund managers score nearly $30 million for Africa’s small businesses

Guest Author

Lucy Ngige

ImpactAlpha Editor

Jessica Pothering

ImpactAlpha, December 6 – Mastercard Foundation’s Africa Growth Fund has allocated $200 million for investment managers supporting economic opportunities for women and youth. Mastercard’s latest deals, totalling $27 million, include $8 million for Tanzania-based SME Impact Fund, which invests in agrifood businesses that work with smallholder farmers.

VestedWorld scored $10 million for its second fund, a $50 million vehicle called Rising Star Fund that makes early-stage investments in Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya and intends to expand to other African countries (featured on this month’s Liist).

Nairobi-based Chui Ventures, a women-led fund, notched $9 million for its planned $20 million fund for seed-stage tech investments in Kenya and Nigeria. The investment is a “game-changer for exceptional African startups,” said Chui’s Joyce Ann Wainaina.

Climate + gender

Separately, FSD Africa Investments, through its Nyala fund, committed $1 million to WIC Capital, a women-led investor of invests equity and quasi-equity in female-founded companies in Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire. The investment gets WIC, which is also backed by Dutch development bank FMO, to a $5 million first close. It positions the firm to attract bigger pools of capital, said FSDAi’s Anne-Marie Chidzero.

FSDAi, a UK government-backed investment firm, seeded Nyala last year with £8.5 million ($10.7 million) to support Africa’s ecosystem of local private fund managers.

Nyala, which focuses on women-led funds, has also invested in Aruwa Capital (also featured on this month’s Liist).