Africa’s Weekly Fintech Review – January 20, 2024

January 20th, 2024
Africa’s Weekly Fintech Review

What’s inside?

• Egypt is working on a CBDC
• $1B Tinbuktoo launches in Kigali
• Access Bank is acquiring a Ugandan bank
• Vodafone & Microsoft pen partnership

Making the news

Egypt is working to launch e-pound CBDC by 2030 
“According to reports from the Egyptian press, the e-pound, which will basically be the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) digital currency, is expected to boost the competitiveness of Egypt’s national currency and enhance the efficiency of monetary policy.” Continue reading

Cleantech and Fintech startups leading the surge for debt funding in Africa’s startup ecosystem 
“According to Briter Bridges’ latest report, titled Debt Financing in Africa’s Innovation Ecosystem, there has been a surge in debt financing, especially in the cleantech and fintech sectors, indicating a shift in funding trends. In the past decade, digital, technology-enabled, and green companies across the continent have secured over $2 billion in disclosed debt funding from 140 funders through more than 200 deals, making up approximately 10% of the total funding during this period.” Continue reading

Banking & Telecom Activity

  • Vodafone and Microsoft sign 10-year partnership to collaborate on generative AI, digital services, and cloud computing 
  • Access Bank announces plans to acquire 80% stake in Uganda’s Finance Trust Bank in a deal expected to close in H1 2024 
  • Lyca Mobile‘s operations in South Africa have closed down after 6 years citing issues staying afloat in the country 
  • Telecom Egypt becomes the first telecommunications company to receive a 5G license in the North African country 
  • Somalia’s Hormuud Telecom settles dispute with government after the National Intelligence & Security Agency (NISA) raids offices over data privacy concerns 


Startup Activity

 Egypt – Logistics startup, Bosta, raises undisclosed investment to accelerate its growth and advance its logistics and delivery services in Egypt & Saudi Arabia
 Egypt – HealthTech startup, Yodawy, acquired (minority stake) by Ezdehar for $10M USD to help support expanding customer base and automated prescription fulfillment 
 Kenya – CleanTech startup, KOKO, raises undisclosed funding from Rand Merchant Bank to strengthen its network of Fuel ATMS to help replace charcoal use in Kenya 
 Nigeria – Fintech startup, Canza, raises $2.3M USD funding round to support the development of its DeFi products 
 South Africa – Fintech startup, Ukheshe, fully acquires EFTCorp as the companies intend to continue operations separately under their own brands 

Investor Activity

  • Timbuktoo launches $1B USD UNDP-supported initiative aimed at creating over 10 million jobs and igniting Africa’s startup revolution 
  • Iyinoluwa Aboyeji and Mia von Koschitzky-Kimani team up to launch Accelerate Africa with the intention of building a Y Combinator for Africa 

Some other tech news…

Featured Article

How Timbuktoo, the UNDP-backed $1B innovation fund will work – Abraham Augustine in TechCabal
“Timbuktoo will provide financing for accelerators and venture builders from the $350 million, including investments of up to $800 million in venture firms in 8 African countries alongside private partners… The fund will be managed from Rwanda, a boon to Kigali’s financial centre Ambitions.” Continue reading

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AFTS partners in the news

Yellow Card and Coinbase partner to expand access to digital assets in Africa 
“Yellow Card, the largest and only licensed Stablecoin on/off ramp on the African continent, and Coinbase, the leading U.S. cryptocurrency exchange, have partnered to expand and simplify access to USDC and digital assets in Africa.” Continue reading

AFTS in the headlines

Is fintech the one true ecosystem vertical? African PreSeed Podcast LIVE @ AFTSLusaka
“On the 2nd of November, the African Pre-seed podcast partnered with the Africa FinTech Summit in Lusaka, Zambia, to host the first-ever edition of APS Live, where our host, Hope Ditlhakanyane had Investor at Flourish Ventures, Efayomi Carr, Founder of scale, Miranda Perumal, and Founder and Chairman of Blockchain Association of Kenya (BAK), Michael Kimani on the couch in front of a live audience to discuss whether fintech is indeed the one true vertical within the African tech ecosystem.” Listen to the episode now! 

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