TradeDepot Raises $110m to Support ‘Buy-Now-Pay-Later’ Service in Africa

TradeDepot, a leading B2B eCommerce platform in Africa, has raised $110 million in equity and debt funding to scale its buy-now-pay-later offering to over 5 million small and medium-sized businesses and expand its merchant platform across the continent.

International Finance Corporation (IFC) led Series B equity round, with participation from Novastar, Sahel Capital, CDC Group, Endeavor Catalyst and existing investors, Partech and MSA Capital. Arcadia Funds led the debt financing.

Small and medium-sized retailers on the continent generate $1 trillion in sales annually and contribute $2.6 trillion to the continent’s nominal GDP, but a fragmented distribution network and limited access to financing have led to inefficiencies in distribution and many missed opportunities.

TradeDepot offers a wide range of consumer goods on its ShopTopUp platform to SMEs within its network and provides these SMEs with credit lines to access inventory and pay for their own sales.

With the new funding, the service will be made available to more retailers, increasing penetration for consumer goods brands and driving prosperity in one of Africa’s most critical sectors.

With operations in 12 cities across Nigeria, Ghana, and South Africa, TradeDepot uses its market data, technology, and robust logistics operations to connect retailers with suppliers and leverage financing to fund inventories for retailers, enabling increased sales, higher margins, and other value-added services.

Speaking about the new funding, Onyekachi Izukanne, CEO and co-founder of TradeDepot, said, “We remain super focused on making digital commerce and financing both accessible and affordable to neighbourhood retailers across key cities in Africa. We are delighted to be joined by an elite group of new investors and have IFC’s Wale Ayeni and Brian Odhiambo of Novastar joining our Board of Directors, to support us on this journey to drive growth and prosperity across the continent.”

TradeDepot has built a network of leading consumer goods brands and SME retailers across Africa, and created a proprietary risk scoring engine that uses retailers’ purchase history, previous repayment performance and other related data points to predict their creditworthiness. This game-changing financing model coupled with industry-leading technology to support logistics operations has led to a 200 per cent increase in transaction volumes for retail store owners.

“The informal sector is a large and critical part of Africa’s economy, accounting for around 80 per cent of jobs in the region,” said Makhtar Diop, IFC’s Managing Director.

“We are excited to work with TradeDepot to leverage technology to help small businesses across the continent, particularly the many retailers led by women, access the resources they need to grow and scale.”

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