Startup News Roundup – New €50 Million Fund to Support High Growth African SMES & More (10 – 14 May)

Updated on 10 May 2021

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Legal Lens and BriefCo Secure Investment

Goodwell Investments Launches New € 50 Million Fund To Support High Growth African SMES 

Goodwell Investments, an impact investment firm, today announced the launch of Goodwell V. Following on from predecessor funds, Goodwell V aims to channel capital from private investors, family offices and foundations to fast-growing, scalable small and medium-sized companies.   

Goodwell V is the cornerstone feeder for a new institutional fund that the company plans to launch in the second half of this year. The firm’s local teams in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa have made more than 20 investments across Africa over the last five years, successfully balancing substantial social impact with delivering a market rate of return to investors.  

Goodwell V will build a new portfolio of companies across various sectors in Africa: at least a third will be invested in financial inclusion, a quarter in agriculture, and the remainder in mobility and other impact sectors such as education and healthcare. The fund will also allocate follow-on funding to existing portfolio companies, such as Copia, MFS Africa, Good Nature Agro, Tomato Jos, and Nomanini.  

Over the next decade, Africa is expected to continue to be home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world. A growing youth population, together with rapid urbanization and improving business environments across the continent, are contributing to an increase in purchasing power and rising household consumption predicted to reach $2.5 trillion by 2030. 

A rising generation of passionate entrepreneurs has emerged, building on these foundations and buoyed by the opportunity to build scalable and innovative business models that solve their communities’ social and development challenges. While investment in African startups grew from $400 million in 2015 to $2 billion in 2019, just 2% of global private equity investment reaches the continent. The capital committed to early and growth-stage businesses in Africa is doubling every year but still merely scratches the surface of the growth potential. To contribute to inclusive growth and provide access to essential goods and services to hundreds of millions of un(der)served consumers, investment needs to happen at scale.

Google Opens Applications for Startups Accelerator Programme   

Applications are open for a new class of the Google for Startups Accelerator programme. It has also launchednew developer scholarships in partnership with Pluralsight and Andela.

Google for Startups Accelerator Africa is a three-month accelerator program for Seed to Series A technology startups across the African continent.

The accelerator is designed to bring the best of Google’s programs, products, people and technology to startups that leverage machine learning and AI in their company today or plan to in the future. In addition to mentorship and technical project support, the accelerator also includes deep dives and workshops focused on product design, customer acquisition and leadership development for founders, specialized training, media opportunities and access to Google’s network of engineers and experts.

Legal Lens and BriefCo Secure Investment

Legal startups Legal Lens and BriefCo have received funding from Imvelo Ventures, local venture capital company, in a cash-for-future-equity deal to help them grow.

Legal Lens and BriefCo were initially two independent startups founded and owned by Catherine Paulse, Yusha Davidson, and two silent co-founders, but have now been merged as part of Cycad Group, a new company in which Imvelo Ventures has invested.

 Legal Lens protects companies, state entities, and individuals from inflated legal fees. The startup is able to reduce legal fees by as much as 60% but say that 10% is about average.

BriefCo is a legal cost consultancy that leverages technology.

The founders are Catherine-Jane Paulse and Yusha Davidson, both admitted attorneys. The duo recognised that legal invoices often reflected billing practices and errors that resulted in unfair, high legal fees.

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