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08 - 07 - 2019

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Kenyan music streaming startup Smubu is planning international expansion after reaching 200,000 active users and 100,000 tracks on its platform since launching in 2018. The streaming service says it is working to establish its presence in Uganda and Tanzania, and move further West in the coming months. Growing a successful music streaming platform in Africa is still largely a gamble especially with the reluctance to pay for content by consumers. Jason Njoku shares more insights in this piece.

Pan-African investment group, Unicorn Group says it has earmarked US$300 million over the next decade to invest in the African technology ecosystem. The organisers of the Africa TechMoney and Innovation Summit says the investment will support African tech startups solving the continent's biggest challenges.

Startups in the Middle East and North Africa who have achieved product-market fit, have over US$10,000 in monthly recurring revenue (US$120,000 annual revenue) and have previously raised between US$250,000 and US$1 million are invited to apply for the Misk Innovation growth accelerator before July 21. Find out more.

As part of plans to open up the country's economy to attract more foreign investment, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is opening up the nation's telecoms sector. The government plans to sell a minority stake in the state-owned phone monopoly, Ethio Telecom, and award telecommunications licenses to two new operators in the first quarter of next year. Orange, MTN Group and Vodacom Group have expressed interest in Ethiopia. According to the finance ministry, the partial privatization will increase competition and consequently expand services to underserved areas in the country. Not only is internet access low in Ethiopia, internet restrictions and shutdowns are quite commonplace.

Join African governments, regulators, investors, development agencies, multinationals and entrepreneurs on July 11 at TC Townhall: Renewable Energy as Techcabal convenes them to discuss "The Future of Africa’s Energy". We will be attempting to answer the question “How do we quickly build a modern energy infrastructure, that is affordable and provides last-mile access, using abundant renewable energy resources, in a friendly policy environment?” Register here to attend.

BuyCoins, in collaboration with Paystack, Lambda Schoool and five African startups have extended the Lambda School Africa pilot. Click here learn more and apply using this link before July 14.

Pharmaceutical procurements platform DrugStoc, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Co-creation Hub under its Growth Capital initiative. The company says the funding will enable it to provide hospitals and pharmacies greater access to genuine pharmaceutical and health care products via its platform. Founded in 2015, DrugStoc has signed up more than 3,000 doctors and pharmacists, providing them with access to genuine drugs and pharmaceutical supplies.

South Africa's Naspers has co-led a €30 million Series A funding round into Dott, a European micro-mobility startup through its Naspers Ventures division. Dott says it will use the investment to launch in new cities in Germany, the UK and the Netherlands, accelerate the go-to-market for its E-bikes, E-scooters and as well provide comprehensive insurance coverage at the same price and other fleet management tools. Naspers is increasingly shifting its focus from its home base and the continent, in general, to focus on its more profitable investments in global markets like India, China, and Europe.

In more Naspers news, its global fintech company, PayU, is expanding into Southeast Asia with the acquisition of Singapore-based Red Dot Payment. PayU is acquiring a majority stake in the online payment solutions provider at a total valuation of US$65 million (R914-million). With this transaction, PayU brings the total amount deployed in fintech investments to more than $700-million in the past three years.

Register or SMS “Pitch” to 43719 (charges apply) to attend the Engen Pitch & Polish competition if you would like to clean up your pitch for when next you meet a potential investor. This year’s competition is in partnership with Nedbank, business incubator Raizcorp and the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) and will include a series of workshops from July 6 to August 24.

Motorcycle hailing company ORide has launched in the southwestern city of Ibadan in Nigeria. ORide, a service featured in Opera's super app, OPay, recently launched in an increasingly competitive motorcycle hailing market in Lagos.

From TechCabal +  Uber Will Now Consider Regulatory Issues Before Expanding to Any More African Countries +  Oreoluwa Somolu-Lesi: A Decade and More of Balancing Tech’s Gender Scale

We'll see you tomorrow,

Have a great week!   - Kay
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