Baobab Network, the Nairobi-based early-stage investment firm that has pledged to invest in over 1,000 African startups by 2033, has acquired South African strategy and branding agency Reflector Marketing. The financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

The acquisition of Reflector Marketing comes at a time when early-stage investors are under pressure to have portfolio companies with solid business cases beyond just venture capital cheques. In Reflector Marketing, Baobab states that it will help its portfolio companies with specialised in-house marketing, branding, and digital services, amplifying their potential for success and further funding.


Through the acquisition, the Reflector Marketing team will join Baobab to provide portfolio companies with in-house digital marketing support. Klyne Maharaj, founder of Reflector Marketing, will assume the role of director of Baobab Network’s accelerator. Founded in 2016, Baobab Network is a sector and geographically agnostic investor who issues a ticket size of $100,000 to its portfolio companies. The company claims that its portfolio’s cumulative valuation is more than $225 million from 50 companies. 

According to Toby Hanington, co-founder of Baobab, the move is evidence of Baobab’s ambitious plans and long-term commitment to investing across Africa. “We’ve worked with the Reflector team since early 2023, and the move to acquire them is a testament to the work they’ve already done with our portfolio,” he said.

In the past, digital marketing, which comprises elements such as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), social media marketing, product strategy, pitch deck preparation and branding, has been the go-to marketing medium for startups. This is because of its affordability compared to traditional marketing, relevance to target customers of startups, and its ability to adapt to the changing interests of the target market.

According to Maharaj, the acquisition is in line with its mission to enable the growth of startups via digital marketing. “Our goal has always been to help the world’s best startups nail their positioning, win their markets, and raise capital to fuel their growth.”

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