In what is a notable first for the group of Nigerian investors, the Lagos Angel Network is getting behind two startups in a commitment that will see it invest cash and time in two early stage internet startups, Autobox and Hutbay.
Autobox sells car spare parts online and was the 2nd runner up of the TechCabal Battlefield competition in February. Hutbay is an online real estate marketplace based in Lagos. Both startups are ensconced in what we are adamantly referring to as the Yabacon Valley, from the Co-Creation and iDEA Hubs respectively.
The Lagos Angel Network’s most visible proponent is Tomi Davies who founded the network with about 12 other angels in 2013. Just shy of one year later, LAN has 22 registered angels who have active interests in the emerging Lagos and Nigerian technology and internet startup scene including Dotun Sulaiman (Chairman, Interswitch), Funke Opeke (CEO, Main One), Wole Lawani (Hyve Capital), Demola Aladekomo ( MD, Chams plc) and more.
The group meets once a month to discuss their activities, and host a dragon’s den style pitch session for Startup entrepreneurs.
On why Autobox and Hutbay were tapped for investment, Tomi Davies said that it considers many factors when evaluating startups and the entrepreneurs behind them, but perhaps the most significant factor they look out for are the personalities of the founders.
“Charles Phillips (Autobox) and Tunji Owolabi (Hutbay) convinced their lead angels not only that they are the right people to execute their plans but also that they can hold drive the vision over a sustainable period of time”.
LAN is not disclosing which investors are participating in the round, or how much they are committing. Both startups however will receive hands on mentorship from at least three angels in the network for the next 12 months.