88mph Seed Accelerator Receives Venture Capital Funding From 4Di Capital
March 25th, 2013
Investment aims to spur more economic growth and expand the startup ecosystem in Afric
CAPE TOWN, South Africa – March 25, 2013
88mph, an African seed accelerator, announced today that 4Di Capital, an independent early-stage venture capital fund based in Cape Town, has invested in the private fund. This marks a first, as no other seed accelerator in Africa has received backing by a venture capital firm.
In addition to funding, the investment from 4Di also provides 88mph startups greater access to a vast network of local investors and gives them a better chance at securing follow-on funding. The partnership challenges misconceptions about African investments and aims to inspire new investors.
“The technology space in Africa is picking up and we’re seeing a lot of activity and opportunity,” says Kresten Buch, 88mph founder. “Investors are watching this and beginning to look outside of developed markets like the United States for growth, because those markets aren’t expected to grow as fast as they have in the past.”
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts sub-Saharan Africa to be the world’s third fastest growing region in 2013 and 2014, with many African economies growing above 7 percent. Moreover, the MSCI Africa equity sub index posted returns of over 60 percent in the last 12 months.
Still, funding for startups continues to be a major hurdle in South Africa and Africa in general.
“88mph is unique in that they provide startups with actual funds, which is very rare for an accelerator in emerging markets and Africa especially,” says Justin Stanford, 4Di CEO and co-founder. “They have spent over one million dollars on investing and supporting startups Africa—far more than any other accelerator here. We have chosen to back this accelerator as a part of our desire to help foster and develop the nascent early-stage startup ecosystem in South Africa.”
88mph is partnered with Google for Entrepreneurs and is also funded by private investors including Hannes van Renburg, Fundamo CEO and Ranjith Cherickel, Head of Sales and Business Development, Africa at Nokia Siemens Networks.
“We’re very excited to have taken a concept from Kenya to South Africa with Google’s support and are now able to bring 4Di on board as well,” says Buch. “The more experienced companies and individuals involved, who inspire trust by attaching their name to this endeavor, the easier it is for these startups to get customers, investors and ultimately succeed.”
88mph opened in Nairobi, Kenya in 2011 and has since made 24 startup investments. The seed accelerator started operations in Cape Town, South Africa in February 2013 and plans to expand to Nigeria
88mph is a startup accelerator and seed fund, investing in web/mobile startups targeting the African market. The company offers three-month accelerator programs in Nairobi and Cape Town. 88mph makes investments simultaneously in 10-12 startups, enabling them to learn from each other and make use of an extensive network of business and technology professionals as well as dedicated startup entrepreneurs in residence. 88mph is Africa’s most active seed fund, with over 24 investments since 2011. To date, the company has spent over one million dollars investing and supporting startups in Africa.
4Di Capital is an independent early-stage technology venture capital firm based in South Africa’s “Silicon Cape.” The firm targets investment opportunities with high growth potential in the seed and early-stages in the mobile, enterprise software and web sectors in Southern Africa. Together the 4Di team draws on decades of global venture capital proficiency and proven startup operational experience.
For more information contact:
Public Relations, 88mph
+27 74 258 4275
Public Relations, 88mph
+27 74 233 8816