Ventures Platform, an early-stage pan-African VC firm, has announced the addition of 10 new African startups to its portfolio.

In a statement released on its blog this afternoon, the firm shared that it had invested in the 10 startups through its newest $40 million fund. Last December, founder Kola Aina shared with TechCabal news about the launch of a new $40 million fund aimed at “finding, funding and supporting groundbreaking market-creating innovation opportunities to create prosperity and position Africa as a formidable force in global markets.”

Contributing to the fund are leading names in Africa’s technology and corporate ecosystem including UAC Nigeria, VFD Group, Gbenga Oyebode, Paystack CEO Shola Akinlade, as well as global investors like Y Combinator CEO Michael Seibel, and Boost VC founder Adam Draper. 

Since its launch in 2016, Ventures Platform has backed almost 70 startups including Seamless HR, PiggyVest, Mono, and Paystack.

This year, the firm has participated in at least 2 investments including Earnipay’s $4 million seed round, and Remedial Health’s $1 million pre-seed round

The 10 startups

Ten new startups have joined the firm’s portfolio, originating from Nigeria, Zambia, and Kenya: Fluna, Catlog, Shekel, and TopUp Mama.

Topup Mama is a Kenya-based restaurant management platform for African restaurateurs to unify and optimise Africa’s fragmented food and beverages supply chain. Ventures Platform invested in Topup Mama because the founder understood the problem deeply, having grown up as the son of a restaurant owner and experiencing the daily challenges and constraints to growth himself. “The founders are ideally suited to disrupt this billion-dollar market,” the company’s blog post read. 

The B2B SaaS treasury management and financing platform Fluna was selected because the firm believes that the founders are “leading the charge to close the $5 trillion total credit gap in developing and emerging economies.” Launched in 2021, Fluna’s product offerings include automated treasury reporting, cash flow forecasting, and multi-bank data feed.

Shekel earned Ventures Platform’s support because of its goal to redefine the urban mobility sector. The startup is a dealership management system enabling auto dealerships to access financing, and helping more Africans own vehicles. Shekel, which was founded in 2021 is presently operating in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, and the US and claims to have powered over $6 million in transactions. 

There’s also Catlog, a social commerce platform that enables merchants on social media platforms to reach massive audiences with cutting-edge sales and marketing tools. “We believe that social commerce is a strong contender for the dominant form of online commerce within highly dynamic African markets, and Catlog is well-positioned to unlock tremendous economic opportunity for millions of small business owners. Merchants can create a free store here,” the firm wrote. 

The other 6 startups—all fintechs—include Blochq, Traction, Moni.Africa, Plumter, Vendy, and Union54.

Although neither Ventures Platform nor the startups have revealed how much was invested in each, but all the startups are early-stage startups.

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Editor’s Note: This article was updated at 6PM WAT to reflect that Ventures Platform invested in a total of 10 startups with its new fund.

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