- Launch Africa has been named as the most Active investor in Africa, according to the latest data from Big Deal.
- The data indicates that Launch Africa has been signing more than a deal a week on average in the last two years, and has the widest geographical spread.
- Launch Africa is followed by Flat6Labs who’s the only one of this very active group to focus exclusively on one region : Northern Africa (with 2/3 in Egypt and 1/3 in Tunisia).
Launch Africa has been named as the most active investor in Africa, according to the latest data from Africa: The Big Deal. The data indicates that Launch Africa has been signing more than a deal a week on average in the last two years, and has the widest geographical spread.
The firm also got involved in 12 percent of all equity deals between $100k and $10m that happened on the continent in the past couple of years.
“Nearly 1,500 investors have been involved in at least one deal in Africa in the past couple of years… and that’s excluding angels! All of them are contributing to the growth of the ecosystem, but some are just taking things to a whole different level,” the report states.
Launch Africa is followed by Flat6Labs the only venture firm exclusively focusing in one region – Northern Africa (with 2/3 in Egypt and 1/3 in Tunisia).
Following in third position is the global accelerator-cum-investor Y Combinator who continued to grow its presence in Africa in 2021-2022. The firms’ 2/3 of its 2022 investments were focused on Nigeria (vs. 38 percent in 2021).
“LoftyInc also made more than three $100k+ investments a month on average during the period, almost half of which were in Nigeria. Next come another accelerator/investor – Techstars – and Future Africa; for both, every other $100k+ deal was also in Nigeria,” the report reveals.
Other investors who have participated in at least one $100k+ deal a month in Africa in 2021-2022 include : Kepple Africa Ventures (now Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures), Founders Factory, Norrsken, Plug and Play, Ventures Platform, Musha Ventures, 4DX Ventures and 500 Global.
“Quite a few of the investors on the list are linked to global programmes with an acceleration component, with various level of localisation of their offering to the continent,” said Max Cuvellier, Founder, Africa – The Big Deal.
According to the report, most of these active investors have been active in at least three of Africa’s five regions with Central Africa being overlooked. Launch Africa, YC, LoftyInc and Plug and Play have invested in all five.
How much did they venture beyond the Big Four? If we compare to the overall percentage of deals that happened outside the Big Four in 2021-2022 (25 percent), the majority of the active investors (8/14) did ‘worse’ and focused more of their investments on the usual suspects. Norrsken is the investor that invested the most in ‘the rest of Africa’, with 45 percent of its deals there.
And how well did they do on the gender front? The majority (9/15) fell below the average in terms of investing in female-led start-ups (14 percent of deals overall in 2021-2022).
“Techstars however performed the best (21%) while two investors on the list – who we won’t name and shame – didn’t back a single start-up with a female CEO during the period. When it comes to female-founded start-ups (where the founder is either a woman or a founding team including at least one woman), half did ‘better’ and half ‘worse’ than the overall average (27% of all deals involving a female-founded start-up). The percentage goes as high as 40 percent for Techstars, and 500 Global,” Cuvellier noted.
“While we did not formally include the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund Africa on the list as they provide ‘non-dilutive capital’, their contribution (113 grants to 12 markets) deserves to be mentioned,” the report concludes.