Kenya’s Pariti Raises $2.85M Led By Harlem Capital To Develop Startup Ecosystems In Emerging Markets

A Kenya-based community-led marketplace building the digital infrastructure for startup ecosystems in emerging markets has raised $2.85 million seed.

Pariti, founded by co-founder and CEO Yacob Berhane and Wossen Ayele, had its round led by U.S.-based Harlem Capital. It’s the first deal in Africa of the VC’s diversity-focused fund that secured $134 million for its second fund earlier this year. 

The other investors involved were Better Ventures, Accelerated Ventures, Diverse Angels, AVG Basecamp, and New General Market Partners.

According to Berhane, who launched the company in 2019 with Ayele, the company has grown 795% this year alone.

He attributes this growth to the pandemic and how the African tech ecosystem has hit an inflection point,

“The pandemic was a Black Swan event because we saw major jump inactivity on our platform. Remote staffing and remote investing accelerated tremendously. This was a bet we made a while back but obviously could not anticipate what was coming,” Berhane said to TechCrunch.

He added: “And after taking nearly ten years to get Africa’s first unicorn, we had six announced in roughly six months. This led to a significant increase of interest from local and international investors for African startups.”

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Abbianca Makoni

Abbianca Makoni is a content executive and writer at POCIT! She has years of experience reporting on critical issues affecting diverse communities around the globe.

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