April 10, 2024

Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures Unveils $60M Fund For Growth-Stage Startups

Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures (VKAV) has announced the closure of its first fund at $60 million. 

A Pan-African Vision with Global Backing

VKAV is a collaborative effort between West African private equity firm Verod Capital Management and Tokyo-based venture capital firm Kepple Africa Ventures.

Notably, the fund includes backing from Japanese powerhouses such as SBI Holdings, Toyota Tsusho Corporation, and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank. Nigeria’s SCM Capital and other institutional investors from Japan, including Taiyo Holdings also contributed.

VKAV’s investment strategy focuses on digital infrastructure builders, efficiency solvers, and market creators.

Supporting growth-stage startups

VKAV’s portfolio already boasts a diverse range of startups, from mobility fintech platform Moove to climate tech company KOKO Networks. 

VKAV is set to back up to 21 growth-stage companies across the continent, focusing on Series A and B startups.

“Over the last few years, we have seen a growth in pre-seed and seed funds,” VKAV partner Ory Okolloh told TechCrunch.

“We felt there are not enough funds at the growth stage of investing to get these companies to the next level in terms of scale, exits or even being around as sustainable profitable businesses.”

“We think there’s still a need for more growth-stage capital with locally based investors,” she continued.

Expanding the Ecosystem

The VKAV fund’s closure comes at a crucial time, as investment in the African tech ecosystem has dropped. 

Yet, VKAV’s commitment to funding growth-stage companies is a positive signal that may inspire confidence among other investors.

The fund’s sector-agnostic approach allows it to explore various industries, from fintech and healthcare to energy and proptech, ensuring a diversified and robust portfolio.

Moreover, VKAV’s pan-African strategy, with plans to explore new ecosystems in Angola, Zambia, DRC, and Tunisia, highlights its commitment to tapping into underserved markets. 

Samara Linton

Community Manager at POCIT | Co-editor of The Colour of Madness: Mental Health and Race in Technicolour (2022), and co-author of Diane Abbott: The Authorised Biography (2020)