Over $4 billion raised by African startups in 2021

Over $4 Billion Raised by African Startups in 2021

According to “Africa: The big deal”, more than $4.3 bn has been raised by African startups through 818 deals $100k & over this year compared to the $1.7 billion that came into the continent in 2020. Without any surprise, the big four (Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt, Kenya) dominated the charts with 80% of the total raised on the continent this year and 76% of all deals, however healthy competition is building up throughout the continent. On another note, the share of megadeals ($100m+) have made up 44% of the funding raised, but the remaining deals still add up to a whopping $2.23bn.


The Nigerian startup ecosystem is the leading tech hub for entrepreneurship on the continent thanks to several factors including a large population of 200 million people, a new tech-savvy generation in addition to a great number of incubators/accelerators, and a growing number of engaging international investors.
Nigerian startups raised over $1.4bn through 215 deals, which represent 35% of the total amount raised and 29% of all deals. 3 mega deals represent 55% of the country’s total amount:


Opay provides its customers with multiple digital services, but it’s the mobile money and payment division that thrives the most. Allowing underbanked users to receive money and pay bills has helped the company grow at an exponential rate.
Opay raised $400 million in a round led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 valuing the company at $2 billion. The round drew participation from many notable international investors such as Sequoia Capital China, Softbank Ventures Asia, and 3W Capital…


Andela is a global talent network that connects companies with engineering talent in emerging markets. It has engineers in more than 80 countries serving over 200 clients such as Cloudflare, GitHub, and Viacom CBS…
Andela became Nigeria’s latest unicorn after raising a $200 million Series E round led by SoftBank. Joining Softbank in the round was new investor Whale Rock and existing ones such as Generation Investment Management, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and Spark Capital.


Flutterwave is a fintech company building tools for businesses that want to provide a secure payments experience for their customers.
The startup announced in March that it has closed $170 million, valuing the company over $1 billion. The round included new and existing investors such as Tiger Global, Avenir Growth Capital, Greycroft capital, Insight Partners, Salesforce Ventures…

South Africa:

South Africa has one of the fastest-growing startup ecosystems in Africa. Key to this growth is a strong foundation of entrepreneurial talent, a strong corporate sector, in addition to access to local and international capital.
South African Startups raised $838 million through 118 deals, which represent 20% of the total amount raised and 15% of all deals. Similarly to Nigeria, there were 3 mega deals in South Africa:


Jumo is banking as a service platform that uses AI to power financial services in emerging markets.
It has raised $120 million in a round of funding led by Fidelity Management & Research Company valuing the company at $400 million. The round saw participation from Visa and Kingsway capital. In total, JUMO has raised more than $200 million in equity and debt rounds from multiple investors including Finnfund, Gemcorp as well as Goldman Sachs, and Leapfrog.


TymeBank is an exclusively digital retail bank that aims to provide every South African with accessible and affordable banking so that they can take part in, grow, and benefit from the country’s economy.
The company has successfully secured a $180 million Series B Capital from investors like Tencent and CDC.

MFS Africa: 

MFS Africa connects mobile money users and service providers, providing access to affordable mobile financial solutions for all.
The company raised $100 million in Series C financing split between $70 million equity and $30 million debt. Private equity fund AfricInvest FIVE co-led the round with existing investors Goodwell Investments and LUN Partners Group. New investors CommerzVentures, Allan Gray Ventures, Endeavor Catalyst, and Endeavor Harvest also joined the round, while ShoreCap III returned as an existing investor with others funds.


Home to a young, vibrant population, Egypt has been one of the African countries leading the innovation scene across the continent with tech startups.
Egyptian startups raised $588 million through 119 deals which made up 14% of the total amount and 15% of all deals. The share of mega deals in Egypt is 37%:


Swvl is a ride-sharing company based in Cairo offering bus-hailing services, car ride-sharing, and corporate services across the 10 cities. The egyptian startup went public in a merger with special purpose acquisition company Queen’s Gambit Growth Capital. The deal valued Swvl at $1.5 billion, beating Jumia’s debut of $1.1 billion on the NYSE.


MNT-Halan is Egypt’s largest and fastest-growing lender to the unbanked. Founded in 2018 to digitally bank the unbanked and substitute cash with electronic solutions. The company closed a $120 million investment in September from private equity firms Apis Growth Fund II, DPI, and Lorax Capital Partners, as well as venture capital firms like Middle East Venture Partners, Endeavor Catalyst, and DisruptTech.


The last of the big 4 and the only one without a mega-deal in 2021, Kenya is one of the leading hubs for entrepreneurship on the continent thanks to several entrepreneurs building solutions for their communities that they want to scale across the globe.
Kenyan startups have raised over $375 million through 119 deals, with Gro Intelligence’s $85m Series B being the biggest deal this year.


Arguably the best startup ecosystem in Francophone Africa, Senegal is home to 70 african startups including wave, the only unicorn in the region. Senegalese Startups raised $222 million through 18 deals, however, wave’s Series A represents 90% of the total amount raised.


Wave Mobile Money provides an app-based financial solution to save, transfer, and borrow money. The company is on a mission to make Africa the first Cashless continent. To fulfill this vision, it has raised $200 million in Series A with a valuation of $1.7 billion.

Other Countries: Total funding raised/Number of deals

Tanzania: $96m, 5 deals

Ghana: $48m, 39 deals

Algeria: $30m, 1 deal

Morocco: $29m

Tunisia: $23m

Uganda: $18m

Rwanda: $16m

DRC: $12m

Cameroon: $11m

Chipper Cash:

Contrarily to all the megadeals mentioned above, Chipper Cash’s $250 million Series C can’t be allocated to one country. The company is founded by Ghanaian and Ugandan co-founders and its African HQs are split between Ghana and Kenya.

Chipper Cash provides software to enable free and instant Peer-to-peer Cross-border payments in Africa and Europe; as well as solutions for businesses and merchants to process online and in-store payments.


As conclusion, we would like to say that we’re extremely happy that African Startups managed to raise this much money. If the % increase in 2022 is as high as the one of 2021, the total amount of capital raised in 2022 may hit $ 10 billion.

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