LAGOS, NIGERIA, Nov 16, 2020 - (ACN Newswire) - Pacer Ventures is launching a $3M fund in sub-Saharan Africa with a focus on early-stage startups solving the most critical problems on the continent. The Delaware registered fund, headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria, and Johannesberg, will focus on verticals that are expedient to the African continent, including healthcare, financial inclusion, education and agriculture.
The UN projects that Africa would have a population of 1.68 billion people by 2030, and the GSMA Mobile Economy Report states that 84% of Africa's population (1 billion people) will have access to a SIM connection by 2025. This high mobile penetration has and will continue to enable the continent to leapfrog technology consumption, as Africa is expected to account for up to 30% of global consumption of technology and technology-driven solutions within the same period.
Even with this great opportunity for provision of technology solutions in Africa, investments on the continent are still comparatively lower than the rest of the world. In 2019, while U.S. and Indian startups raised $136 billion and $10.6 billion respectively, African startups raised just $491.6 million cumulatively, a 47% YoY increase from 2018, but still a far cry from other markets.
"We see a huge opportunity to support early stage founders who are making meaningful contributions to their local economies and communities," said Gbemi Akande, Managing General Partner at Pacer Ventures. "We are providing much needed funds to founders leveraging mobile penetration to solve problems at the 'bottom of the pyramid' across the continent." Pacer has already begun to support early stage founders by participating in seed rounds, including VPD Money.
With an average cheque size of $100k, Pacer Ventures is positioned to add substantial value to its portfolio companies. According to Antoinia Norman, Pacer General Partner in charge of Southern Africa, "We won't just write a cheque, we will enable Founders to work in and on their business, by supporting them every step of their journey, with technical and financial skills, team building, access to markets, resources, and our networks. All these help them to grow, for future fundraising rounds."
The General Partners of Pacer Ventures have over 30 years of combined deal flow, sourcing and startup experience. Pacer's differentiator is its focus on sourcing high potential African startups early, leveraging a strategic partnership with Founder Institute chapters across Africa as a funnel, and identifying winning teams with solutions that meet market needs. "Our collaboration with Founder Institute gives us an undeniable edge particularly with quality deal-flow at an early stage, which we will leverage to strategically expand our footprint across multiple African Markets," said Chukwuemeka Agbata, Regional Director of Founder Institute in Africa and Co-founder, techbuild.africa
Speaking on the Pacer Investment thesis, Geoffrey Weli-Wosu, a General Partner at Pacer Ventures and Co-Founder of VoguePay and Domineum, stated, "We are leveraging our in-depth experience in startups, deal flow sourcing and ecosystem development to take advantage of the early-stage funding gap in Africa. We're investing in seed-stage founders and companies within the top African ecosystems - these are founders that are usually under the radar of a lot of investors. We know the markets and our investment team is well qualified to execute this thesis."
Official website: https://pacer.vc/
Pacer blog: https://pacer.vc/blog/
Pacer email: [email protected]
Topic: Press release summary
Sectors: Cards & Payments, Funds & Equities, FinTech & Blockchain, Venture Capital
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