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14 – 11 – 2019

Good morning and thanks for joining today’s edition of TC Daily. If this was forwarded to you, please take a moment to subscribe. You can also join our Telegram channel for the latest stories in the African tech ecosystem. 

Binance, the world’s biggest trading platform whose vision is to increase the freedom of money globally, now accepts Naira!

Visit to start trading.

FinDev Canada has announced an investment of $7.5 million to Alitheia IDF, a fund supporting women-owned and led businesses, to boost women’s economic empowerment and access to finance in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Alitheia IDF is a joint venture between Alitheia Capital (AC) in Nigeria and IDF Capital (IDFC) in South Africa. The venture was seeded with a $12.5 million investment from the African Development Bank (AfDB).

According to a press release:The capital invested by FinDev Canada will be used to finance locally-owned, high-growth SMEs. The Fund targets SMEs that address unmet demand for essential goods and services and operate in priority sectors where women entrepreneurs are dominant both as producers and consumers, such as agribusiness and consumer goods.”

If you’re wondering why the fund is solely dedicated to women, here’s the President of the AfDB, Akinwumi Adesina, to break it down with a thought-provoking statistic: “Currently, women operate over 40% of SMEs in Africa, but there is a financing gap of $42 billion between male and female entrepreneurs. This gap must be closed, and quickly.”

This week, on My Life In Tech, our focus is on 28-year-old founder Oghenetega Iortim who leads Gricd, a startup focused on coldchain logistics. The company began with farm produce storage but has since pivoted to healthcare delivery. Find out more in Kay Ugwuede’s series on some of the innovative startups, investments and policy formations driving the technology sector across Africa.

And you can find all previous entries here, they’re all worth your time!

Hello Nigeria, meet PalmPay. PalmPay is an Africa-focused startup that has finally launched in Africa’s largest nation after months of pilot testing that began in July. It comes to town with $40 million in seed funding.

Now, $40 million is a lot of money in Africa’s nascent startup ecosystem. But $40 million in seed funding opens you up to a world of unending possibilities. The round was led by Chinese phone maker Transsion through its Tecno subsidiary and that means the app will be pre-loaded on all Transsion phones from 2020. That’s almost 20 million phones, according to my back of the napkin arithmetic. With OPay also backed by $50 million in Chinese money, expect aggressive competition. And you can also expect TechCabal to chronicle every step of what seems to be an exciting time ahead.

Chika Nwobi will be at our forthcoming townhall on edtech & the future of work. Nwobi is founder of Decagon where a corps of world-class Nigerian software engineers are being equipped with the skills to fuel the growth of the African technology ecosystem. Before Decagon, Chika was involved in incubating over 20 startups including Babybliss – Nigeria’s top omnichannel platform for mom and baby, Jobberman – Nigeria’s largest online job board (sold to Ringier) and Cheki – Africa’s largest online cars marketplace.

TC Townhall Edtech & the Future of Work will hold on November 29, 2019. We are bringing together regulators, government agencies, investors, entrepreneurs, NGOs, social enterprises and schools to set a strong agenda about how to use technology to leapfrog Africa’s education challenges and prepare our citizens for future jobs. To attend the Townhall, click here to buy your tickets. To enjoy our early-bird discount, click here or use the code TCEDTECH at checkout. Further discounts apply for companies/individuals buying at least 5 tickets. Please click here to enjoy our corporate discounts.

We are also putting together a map of the African edtech industry. If you have an edtech startup or you are a technology company doing significant work in the industry we would like to hear from you. Please fill this form.

Various tech startups were among 14 winners at this year’s AppsAfrica Innovation Awards in Cape Town. The fifth annual awards showcased the best mobile and tech services from across the continent, with entries received from startups and corporates from 52 African countries.

Winners were drawn from different categories: South Africa’s IDEA Digital Education won the Social Impact Award; Angola’s Appy Saúde named Best African App; Nigeria’s Carbon winning Best Fintech Solution; and Nigeria’s 54gene named Best HealthTech Solution.

All the winners have been invited to next year’s Africa Tech Summit in Kigali in February.

For a full list of winners, go here.

Microtraction, the early-stage Venture Capital firm, has announced its investment in Termii, a startup that enables businesses to retain customers through personalized messages sent across multiple communication channels.

In a blog post, Microtraction praised the Termii team for “focusing on building out their product and talking to their users constantly which has, in turn, increased their growth via word of mouth and referrals.”

Microtraction typically invests $65,000 in two stages: First, it invests $15,000 for 7.5% equity stake, followed by an additional $50,000 convertible note at a $1 million valuation cap in companies that show significant progress after the initial investment. Some of their portfolio companies include Cowrywise, BuyCoins, Riby; companies that have since go on to bigger things.

If Microtraction’s previous bets are anything to go by, Termii could be yet another successful company out of that stable. Keep an eye out for them.

Did you know that GIG Mobility, the traditional Nigerian transport company, has a partner programme for people who want to invest in road transport? Under this programme, entrepreneurs can buy vehicles and place them under GIGM’s management while monitoring the activities of their buses.

GIGM is often seen only as a transport company and having been in the business for over 20 years, it’s easy to see why. But Wole Olayinka, in this TechCabal article, takes a deep dive into the company’s gradual transformation into an outfit whose remit has gone beyond simply moving people from point A to B, and has now become a fully-fledged technology company. This story is what happens when innovation and new ideas are given a chance. Give it a read.

Tek Experts, a leading, global provider of business and IT support services is hosting its first Open Day Forum themed ‘Preparing for the Future of Work in Nigeria’.

The Forum, which is a gathering of IT industry professionals, is holding today and 5 lucky TechCabal Daily readers have been selected to attend.

Have you ever had a tough time locating someone’s house in Africa? We’ve all been there. If you live in a suburban-to-rural community, you will have some difficulty directing first-time visitors to your home.

Enter: NIMA Codes, a Senegalese-startup that wants to turn your phone number into your home address.

So, how does it work? Alexander Onukwue, of this parish, has the lowdown.

Like almost everything else in 2019, it started with a tweet. When the #JollofRoad team found out a couple of Nigerians were on a similar journey to theirs, Fu’ad, ever the wise man, asked what the odds of them meeting each other was. Whatever those odds were, they’ve now been smashed as the two travelling parties met up in Senegal on Tuesday.

In the latest entry in the Journal, they speak about meeting new people, Aina and Azeem, who feel like old friends and a particularly funny case of mistaken identity.  It’s Day 53 of 80 and the 10th country visited so far. Visit every day to catch up on all the stories from Senegal and the remaining four countries! Join the conversation on Telegram and WhatsApp.

That’s it for today,
See you tomorrow!

– Aanu


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