This time, the foundation has partnered with thirty unicorn entrepreneurs as well as a few seasoned venture capital and private equity investors to launch a $200 million fund aimed at African startups.
According to a statement, the fund, branded the Norrsken22 African Tech Growth Fund, has reached its initial close of $110 million. It’s Norrsken’s latest fund, following the closure of a €125 million impact fund for European companies in March.
Norrsken was founded by Hans Otterling, a partner at Northzone, a U.K.-based early venture capital firm that led the investment in Adalberth’s prior startup Klarna.
General partners Natalie Kolbe, the ex-global head of private equity at Actis, a private equity fund focused on emerging countries, Ngetha Waithaka, and Lexi Novitske, the ex-managing partner at Acuity Ventures Platform, make up the firm’s investment. On a teleconference with a blog site, Novitske said the firm is in talks with a couple DFIs and hopes to close the deal later this year.
Novitske was a principal at Singularity Investments before joining Acuity. API fintechs like Mono and OnePipe, as well as exiting startups like Flutterwave, Paystack, and mPharma, are among the firms’ portfolio companies.
Africa’s VC funding hit an all-time high of $4 billion in 2021, more than the continent’s businesses raised in the previous two years combined.
This expansion was mostly fuelled by growth and late-stage deals such as $100 million-plus rounds from unicorns Andela, Flutterwave, Chipper Cash, OPay, and Wave, as well as other startups. Nonetheless, according to Briter Bridges and The Big Deal, they were far fewer than early-stage deals.
Aside from the lack of growth and late-stage tests, there’s another difficulty. Local investors prefer to focus on pre-seed to Series A rounds with micro to medium-sized funds, hence most of these huge deals are financed by overseas VCs.
The Norrsken Foundation, as an anchor shareholder, plans to reinvest 22 percent of its holdings in projects across Africa, including the Kigali House.
To read our blog on “MAX, a Nigerian mobility technology company, has raised $ 31 million in Series B funding to grow across Africa and construct EV infrastructure,” click here.