Discover more from Africa: The Big Deal
Last but not least: South Africa 🇿🇦
With more than $758m raised in the country in 2021 so far, South Africa is on track for a record year
After covering Nigeria, Egypt, and Kenya, it is time to have a closer look at South Africa, especially given the great announcements from Jumo and MFS Africa last week. The number of $1m+ deals has grown steadily in the past three years, though the country’s on track to lose its #1 rank to Nigeria in this category in 2021... Meanwhile, the amount raised through $1m+ in South Africa has literally exploded: from $81m in 2019, to almost $300m in 2020 (3.7x YoY), and $758m in 2021YTD (2.5x YoY), with still 7 weeks to go until the end of the year. With this strong performance, the country went from #4 in 2019 to #3 in 2020, and is now #2 behind Nigeria. The largest share of this funding is going to fintech (of course…): the importance of the sector grew from around 40% in 2019-2020 to more than 2/3 in 2021 so far, especially due to Jumo’s $120m round and MFS Africa’s $100m Series C last week. Fintech now represents a higher share of the total amount raised in 2021 in South Africa (68%) than it does in the fintech behemoth, Nigeria (62%). Now, who is raising most of this funding? As we covered previously, South Africa is quite unique in that the vast majority of its start-up CEOs raising $1m+ deals are educated in the country; the University of Cape Town is leading the pack as almost a third of the startups CEOs that closed a funding round in South Africa this year graduated from this institution. Unfortunately, the dominance of male-led and male-founded start-ups is pretty aligned with the rest of the continent: over the 2019-2021YTD period, 92% of $1m+ deals (93% in value) were signed by male CEOs; 80% of such deals (85% in value) were secured by all-male founding teams i.e. male single founders & male-only founding teams.
Thank you very much for sticking with us over the weeks, and for sharing this content around: it feels great to see our graphs pop up here and there in presentations or on social media. We’re hoping to announce the winners of our little database raffle soon: we’ve sent the email to the winners, so you might want to check your junk folder just in case… ;)