Here are the technology news, startup, and VC deals we tracked across the African region this week.
- 🇬🇭 Ghanaian health-tech startup mPharma, which offers a wide range of services including medical consultation, diagnostic, and telehealth services, has raised $35 million in a Series D round to build its data infrastructure, increase its talent pool, and support expansion plans in its current and new markets.
- 🇳🇦 Namibian B2B e-commerce startup JABU, which connects over 6K retailers to local and multinational suppliers and digitizes orders, payments, and logistics, has raised $3.2 million in a seed round from Afore Capital, Y Combinator, FJ Labs, Quiet Capital, Kli Capital, and others.
- 🇿🇦 South Africa-based carrier-neutral colocation provider Teraco has been acquired by Digital Realty, in a deal that will value Teraco at around $3.5 billion.
- 🇪🇬 Egypt-based e-commerce startup and B2B fashion marketplace Gahez raised $2 million in a pre-Seed round led by Disruptech Ventures with the participation of Egypt Ventures, Tanmeyah (an EFG Hermes company), Afropreneur fund, and other strategic angel investors.
- 🚀 African tech startups raised an estimated $5 billion in funding during 2021 in over 240 deals, with fintech startups raising over 60% of the total funding, according to Briter Bridges, a London-based research company that tracks investments into African startups.
- 🇪🇹 Ethiopia's government suspended the tender process for its second telecommunications license, with plans to relaunch it in the "near future".
- 🇿🇦 South African media giant Naspers, through its early-stage tech investment vehicle Naspers Foundry announced an R54 million (a $3.4 million) investment into Planet42, a car subscription company addressing transport inequality.
- 💸 Cross-border remittance platform Taptap Send, which lets users send money back home to Africa and Asia, announced $65 million in a Spark Capital-led Series B round, to continue its mission to bring remittances to the most underserved countries in the world.
- 🇰🇪 Kenyan fintech startup Paylend, which is providing access to finance and digitizing MSMEs in Kenya, raised $2 million in a seed funding round from Asia-based Next Chymia Consulting HK Limited, to expand its operations in Kenya and launch in Tanzania, Zambia, and Nigeria.
- 🇳🇬 Nigeria's MAX, a mobility startup pioneering clean-energy transportation technology in Africa, raised $31 million, the first close of a Series B funding round, led by London-based Lightrock Global, to expand into Egypt and Ghana, and build its EV infrastructure.
- 🌍 AfDB Group approved a $1.5 million grant to assess policy gaps in the digital trade and e-commerce ecosystems in 10 countries in Africa, including Côte d’Ivoire, Benin, Ghana, Liberia, Uganda, South Sudan, Zimbabwe, Republic of Congo, São Tomé and Príncipe, and the DRC.
- 🪙 African Blockchain Lab acquired a $6 million Series Pre-A investment from Lateral Frontiers VC, CRE Venture Capital, Musha Ventures, as well as international blockchain investors, to help support the launch of its crypto wallet VIBRA Africa.
The Draft provides a weekly roundup of the most important tech news across key emerging markets in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. Follow the rest of our coverage @techloy on Twitter.