Just as changes are occurring in every part of the world, Africa is becoming an interesting place for startups and entrepreneurs. For some years now, Africa has become one of the hottest topics in the technology industry, especially mobile. In order to facilitate the growth of Africa’s entrepreneurs, Orange Digital Ventures has invested in one of Africa’s mobile technology company known as Africa’s Talking Ltd.
Orange Digital Ventures Africa investment fund’s new initiative for Africa has announced its first investment to help Africa’s Talking raise US $8.6 million alongside the IFC World Bank and Social Capital.
What is special about Orange Digital Ventures?
Orange, the big French carrier with 240 million customers, formally known as France Telecom has bid to get closer to little startups, and appear a little cooler in the process. Orange wants to be the new black. With the aim of finding strategic funding and then working with early-stage tech business, Orange unveiled a new fund called Digital Ventures.
However, Orange Digital Ventures is Orange’s early-stage corporate investment vehicle. It was created in 2015. It comprises a dedicated team of telecoms, digital and investment professionals.
Orange says that Digital Ventures will start out initially with a budget of $23 million ( €20 million). Nevertheless, this is not Orange’s first moves in the area of venture funding, nor the first work with startups.
In 2012, Orange started a $400 million fund in partnership with advertising giant, Public and French investment manager, Iris. Also, it backed individual sites like music streaming Deezer and online video company DailyMotion, to name but a few.
Africa’s Talking Ltd.
Africa’s Talking Ltd, is a mobile technology company with its headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. The company is working with a goal to unlock the potential of mobile communication networks across Africa. The Africa’s Talking SMS/ USSD/ Voice and Airtime APIs have more than 1000 active developers spanning corporates, tech start-ups, SMEs and even budding techies.
— Sagini (@sagini) April 27, 2018
The company is aimed at building the best mobile technology systems that are scalable, robust, reliable and cloud-based. This is in order to enable end users to interface directly with telecommunication service providers across the continent. The company’s deep involvement with developers is to ensure that excellent service for any technical solution over mobile are provided.
However, this new established relationship will enable Africa’s Talking Ltd to take Africa to the next level.
According to the CEO of Africa Talking, the relationship is good news to the company. “This new round of fundraising will enable us to grow our Pan-African community of Software Developers building businesses that consume communication and payment service. In this context, the arrival of Orange Digital Ventures is excellent news for Africa’s Talking,” he said.
The company intends to leverage the new relationship to accelerate their expansion in countries where Orange is present. Notwithstanding, it is also good news for all of Africa’s startups.