Nigerian ecommerce startup iAfrica gets $83 million in funding

Posted on February 9th, 2016
eCommerce Grow

Today's top entrepreneurship and business stories (9 February)


iAfrica Internet Group (AIG)will receive €75 million ($83 million) from Europe’s AXA Insurance in exchange for an 8% equity stake.

AIG owns online retailer ZandoJumia and 8 other ecommerce platforms.

AIG will use the funds to support all points of its business model aimed at expanding ecommerce services across Africa’s core economies. The investment buys AXA access to AIG’s expanding startup network.

AIG CEO Sacha Poignonnec  says “AXA not only sees this as an opportunity to invest in a company that will bring financial returns, they also see us as a great partner to accelerate distribution of insurance products in Africa” (Techcrunch)

Indian food startup Zomato breaks even at home and other key markets

India’s largest restaurant search and food delivery startup, Zomato, this week announced it has broken even in India and in several key markets including Indonesia and three other Asian markets.

They also announced that they would be profitable by the middle of 2016, which according to Forbes, will make Zomato the first Indian e-commerce unicorn to become profitable.

New Delhi-based Zomato is valued at just over $1 billion and its backers include Sequoia Capital, Singapore government’s Temasek Holdings and Indian ecommerce player, Info Edge. (Forbes)

Unilever is searching for world’s top marketing tech startups

Unilever Foundry has announced its search for the world’s top 50 marketing technology startups, who will be taken to Lions Innovation in Cannes in June to pitch to industry leaders.

Successful startups will be given access to exclusive networking opportunities, discounted accommodation in the Foundry 50 village for four nights, a free delegate pass to Lions Innovation conference and the opportunity to showcase their technology in an interactive space on the show floor.

“The Unilever Foundry has a knack of identifying and supporting the most innovative startups in the world. Being selected as part of the Foundry 50 gave us validation in the eyes of the industry that is unparalleled. We had access to people and opportunities that would not have been possible alone. The introduction made at Lions Innovation through the Foundry 50 have lead to investments from the markets we are trying to conquer!” said Edward Pearse Wheatlely, co-founder of Seenit and 2015 Foundry 50 finalist.

Startups can apply here. Entries close on Friday 11th March. (Netimperative)

Mining Indaba gets underway

Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane opened the annual Investing in African Mining Indaba in Cape Town yesterday. The Mining Indaba runs from 8 to 11 February, and is attended by the leading mining companies as well as juniors, government representatives, ministers and civil societies, mining engineers and others invested in the continent.

The indaba comes during a slump in commodities, with mines shedding jobs and mining houses cutting costs.

Speaking of his first few months in office, Zwane said he had met various stakeholders, who had indicated that regulatory certainty was necessary. In response, the government had prioritised the processing and finalisation of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development (MPRD) Amendment Bill as a matter of urgency “to entrench the necessary certainty”.

“We are also in the process of reviewing the Mining Charter. It is an important transformation tool and its targets remain applicable beyond 2014. The social and labour plan commitments constitute a critical component of restoring and sustaining the dignity of mineworkers and communities.”

Regarding stability, the minister also pointed out that in terms of the latest global competitiveness rankings, South Africa featured favourably with regards to financial market efficiency, transport infrastructure and property rights. “As government we will continue to create an enabling environment for investment and the ease of doing business in the country.” (