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Dr. Abasi Ene-Obong, the co-founder of African genomics company 54gene, has officially stepped down as chief executive officer.  54 Gene, founded in 2019 by Ene-Obong, works to address the gap in the genomics market. Despite being more genetically diverse, Africans currently make up less than 3% of genetic material used in pharmaceutical research, which is why 54 Gene’s work is incredibly important in bridging that gap. Ene-Obong will continue his duties as a co-founder while transitioning into a new role as a senior advisor. The platform has hired General Counsel Teresia Bost as

Venture capital (VC) investment in African startups has seen a 33% increase compared to this time last year, according to gathered by The Big Deal. This follows similar reports of funding for African startups hitting new records in the first half of 2022. So far this year, more than 800 investors have contributed to at least one $100K+ startup deals on the continent.  Investors have also been far more active than in previous years. For example, 250 firms made at least two investments (45% more than in 2021), and 60 partook

Serena Williams is making big moves in the venture capital world. After announcing earlier this year, that she would be stepping away from tennis, Williams has embodied the phrase ‘put your money where your mouth is, by investing over $100 million in early-stage startups.  Ugandan-based fintech, Numida, is the latest business to benefit from investment from Serena Ventures. The fintech recently raised $12.3M in a pre-series A funding round led by Serena Ventures. Participation included the Pan-African VC fund, Launch Africa, Breega, Soma Capital, Y Combinator, and MFS Africa.   What is

South Africa will become the latest country to join Google Cloud as the tech giant’s first cloud region on the continent.  On October 5th, 2022, Google announced plans to follow in the footsteps of competitors by launching its premier African cloud region. Cloud regions in Africa This comes years after major cloud providers Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services established their South African cloud regions in 2019 and 2020, respectively. In addition, earlier this year, Oracle, another competing cloud service, set up its data center in Johannesburg, making Google the

Nigerian startup Stears has announced a $3.3 million seed round led by MaC Venture Capital which included Serena Ventures. What started as a written media publication by a group of Nigerian graduates is now a growing data insights company with its sights set on rivalling the likes of Bloomberg. Backed by Serena Ventures Serena Williams was playing in the US Open when the seed round for Stears came together. Nevertheless, according to Serena Ventures’ founding general partner, they were keen to invest and fought “tooth and nail” to get in.

Funding for African startups has hit a new record between January and June. According to reports, the African market is the first to see more than a single digit of growth which was extremely unpredictable considering the slowdown globally.  Venture capital deals within the African region reached a striking $3.5 billion in six months, with no other continent coming marginally as close to Africa’s startup funding growth.  Of the 300 companies that benefitted from this funding, 27% were led by female founders or had at least one female founder. This is

Black-owned health startup Ubenwa uses artificial intelligence to detect early diseases in babies and their cries.  The startup’s learning system analyzes the amplitude of a baby’s cry and uses cutting-edge AI to diagnose infants up to six months old. By analyzing the frequency patterns of a baby’s cry, the AI-powered software picks up on brain and lung conditions in young infants.  Communicating with babies Ubenwa was co-founded in 2017 by Charles Onu, Samantha Latremouille, and Innocent Udeogu. The startup combines AI techniques with medical expertise to detect breathing conditions and

Byld Ventures, a $15 million fund launched this May, has eyes for startups mainly across Egypt and Nigeria due to the partners’ experiences in those markets. Byld Ventures reached its first close almost in June and a second close at $10 million last month. It expects to achieve its final close by year’s end, according to TechCrunch. Over a dozen athletes have backed the fund as well as the Dubai government and several unnamed institutional LPs. The early-stage fund — which has made four investments: Ceviant, Apata, Thepeer and Anchor — consists of four

When Kwasi Kwarteng delivered the new UK government’s first major fiscal policy package in last week’s “mini-budget”, all eyes were on him in regards to how he would help Britain excel it’s tech scene. His predecessor, Rishi Sunak’s brand centered around being “a startup Treasury” — an agenda cut short when he resigned earlier this year. But it seems Kwarteng has made some key policy changes that some startups say will help fuel their growth. We’ve listed some of them blow: Plan: SEIS is broadened Kwarteng plans to widen access

J Balvin, also known as the Prince of Reggaeton, has made a wholesome move to create an open discussion around mental health struggles by launching OYE, a bilingual wellness app.  The app, currently available for download on the app store, was built by Latin creators in Spanish and English. It provides users with emotional check-ins and goal-setting exercises and promotes the idea of achieving a balance between emotional wellness, physical health, and interpersonal relationships.  “After the pandemic, global youth – really everyone – is extremely burnt-out. Anxiety, depression, and feelings of being

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