BY TOM JACKSON
VC firm Ingressive Capital has doubled its investment vehicle to back high-growth, tech-enabled startups across Africa, meaning it now operates a US$10 million fund.
Ingressive Capital invests in pre-seed and seed-stage tech-enabled businesses in the B2B space that solutions to Africa’s traditional billion-dollar industries, as well as B2C fintech and internet companies.
The company averages US$200,000 to US$400,000 ticket sizes and targets 10 per cent ownership into companies it funds. Its portfolio includes Paystack, Tizeti, Jetstream, 54gene, OZÉ, Bamboo and many more high-growth startups.
New investors into the fund, which now totals US$10 million, include Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Plexo Capital, Platform Capital and other institutional capital. Additional backers include Michael Seibel, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Y Combinator, including individuals at Techstars, WTI and more than 10 other top funds and accelerators.
Ingressive Capital founder Maya Horgan-Famodu said many billion-dollar companies had been founded or found their footing during economic downturns and market contractions, meaning the firm had no concerns about investing during the COVID-19 crisis.
“We know that creativity blossoms when resources become scarce. We launched and grew Ingressive through Nigeria’s last recession. As far as global businesses, IBM found its market and scaled through the Great Depression. Zendesk launched in 2007 and raised in 2008, and Airbnb was founded out of the 2008 downturn. WhatsApp, Uber and Venmo launched in the 2009 recession. Safaricom was founded in 1993 from Kenya’s worst economic performance since its independence with inflation reaching 100% that year, and mPesa started in 2007, and grew through the following years’ global recession,” she said.