Following our work on mobile operator-led corporate venture capital funds and the publication of our report, ‘Start-ups and Mobile in Emerging Markets: Insights from the GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator, Issue #2’, Grégoire de Padirac, Investment Manager, Orange Digital Ventures Africa, has guest-authored this post to share some details on the work done by Orange on this topic in the region. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the GSMA. Photo credit: Orange Group.
“Africa is on the move”, said Barack Obama during his trip to Kenya in 2015, talking about the country of his ancestors. For some years now Africa has been becoming one of the hottest topics in the technology industry, especially mobile. There are no major tech events without its African special focus; Slush, VivaTechnology, SXSW, etc. This revolution has mobile technology as its driving force. The continent is becoming the new ‘wild west’ of mobile tech, attracting thousands of entrepreneurs and investors from around the world.
The presence of mobile phones has been growing for decades, yet the growth of venture capital (VC) on the continent is more recent and striking in the past few years. The Partech Africa team found that total funding of African tech ventures grew by 53 per cent as compared to 2016, with 124 startups raising over $560 million.