Impact Investing | December 5, 2022

Nigeria’s Aruwa Capital raises more than $20 million for its first gender-lens fund

Jessica Pothering
ImpactAlpha Editor

Jessica Pothering

ImpactAlpha, December 5 – Aruwa Capital launched in 2019 to invest in Nigeria’s small and mid-sized businesses and help them build more inclusive businesses for women managers, workers and customers. The Lagos-based investment firm surpassed its target with backing from the Visa Foundation, Mastercard Foundation, Nyala Ventures and others.

Aruwa was the first investment of both Mastercard Foundation’s $200 million Africa Growth Fund and Nyala Ventures, a fund seeded by FSDAi to invest in first-time emerging market fund managers.

Thirty percent of the capital came from local investors “who have a first-hand understanding of the operating terrain,” said Aruwa’s Adesuwa Okunbo Rhodes, “a trend we hope to see continue.” 

Aruwa has invested 45% of its capital in six companies. Wemy Industries makes personal hygiene companies. Koolboks makes renewably-powered refrigerators to support farmers and cut food waste. Women-led fintech venture Pngme uses mobile phone data to improve lending in Africa.