Africa-focused Venture Capitalist firm, TLcom Capital that targets early stage tech startups has raised the sum of $70m in its first close, whilst aiming for a $150m fund round in its next close. Through the Tide Africa Fund II, TLcom intends to invest in 20 startups over the next couple of months.
While there are many venture capital startup-driven companies in Africa, TLcom is undoubtedly one of the largest independent venture capitalist investor Africa with a focus on women led Startups.
Partnering with TLcom in the first close are AfricaGrow (a joint venture between Allianz and DEG Impact), Swedfund, FBNQuest Sango Capital, CDC Group, Bertelsmann, King Philanthropies Proparco and IFC.
TLcom is on the lookout for startups that leverage technology to deliver value to underserved markets. TLcom Capital also plans to use the funds raised to invest in early stage startups that are still in their Seed and Series A stages.
It has several startups like Kobo360, uLesson, Andela, Twiga Foods, Autochek Africa, Ajua™ and others in its portfolio. A breakthrough for TLcom was Andela’s attainment of a unicorn status at a $1.5b valuation. As of now, ticket size of these companies range from $500,000 to $15 million.
African startups have raised seven Unicorns including Fawry, OPay, Wave, Flutterwave, Interswitch, Andela, Chipper Cash and Jumia, the least of these notching at a $1b valuation.
Speaking on the massive cash flow and capital investments, Maurizio Caio, Managing Partner at TLcom said, “The big picture is that we are still very early in African VC despite raising almost $5 billion”.
He added, “This is the message to the entrepreneurs: Think big, don’t try to second-guess, focus on the magnitude of the opportunity, because if it’s compelling, you will find capital to support it”.
Ciao told entrepreneurs not to worry about dilution but rather, focus on the resources needed to build a company in a large and competitive market. He further urged them to utilise the advantage of collective capitalism while being a part of TLcom.
TLcom which was established in 1999, has backed several innovative entrepreneurs with focus on tech aspects such as Access to Data Service, Financial Services, eCommerce, Business-to-consumer (B2C) applications, including areas of healthtech, edtech, energy, media, entertainment and Software solutions to corporates and Small and medium enterprises (SMEs). It currently has 7 portfolio exits.
As a part of a plus, TLcom’s exit companies (that is, past companies under its capitals) are generating revenue 3x its funding capital.
With offices in Lagos, Nairobi and London, Maurizio Caio, Founder and Managing Partner of TLcom Capital LLP works with senior partner, Omobola Johnson and partners Ido Sum and Andreata Muforo.
(Wholly Reported by Ajifa Treasure Solomon)