Business Edge | Private Equities Navigating Investment in African Tech

On Monday, June 13, the flagship business show on News Central TV, became a one-hour program, with expanded segments to cover all facets of the business world. The very first one-hour episode of Business Edge launched today and first takes on the private equities world where a deluge of investment has transformed Africa’s tech scene. While many African countries have been known more for their political instability, lack of infrastructure and opportunities, access to funds etc, technology has had the opposite trajectory: innovation in the sector has driven development and investment has flooded in from venture capitalists and private equities, so much so that it is making certain observers and analysts describe it as a “bubble.” From South Africa to Nigeria to Kenya and Egypt, the volume of investment capital flowing to these countries via their respective tech scenes is in the billions of dollars. 

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To discuss how African private equities are navigating investments in the tech space with Tolulope Adeleru-Balogun is, Shirley Somuah, Parter, CardinalStone Capital Advisors.

The popular trope is that the insufficient – and in some cases, complete unavailability – of required infrastructure in African countries will stifle the growth and development of technology. The reverse is the case as tech has created solutions to many nagging problems on the continent. Unsurprisingly, the fintech sub-sector has received the most attention and funding. In the words of Somuah, “Many of the challenges Africa has are the reasons why the continent is ripe for technological innovation.”

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In addition, Shirley Somuah suggests the traction being witnessed, plus the sizes of business and valuations – as a way to measure the success thus far. “Five or six years ago, there were no African unicorns (ie businesses valued at over $1 billion. Today there are seven unicorns,” she says.

Part 1 of the one-hour Business Edge episode also includes the day’s most important business headlines. Watch above

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