Orange Digital Ventures Africa, the Orange investment fund’s new initiative for Africa launched last June, has announced its first investment, helping Africa’s Talking to raise $8.6 million alongside the IFC World Bank and Social Capital. This was contained in a press statement released by Orange™ through their official website. The transaction is subject to the usual conditions precedent, including the approval from the Kenyan’s competent authorities, the statement further revealed.
Upon completion, Africa’s Talking plans to boost its internationalization to support its clients’ expansion strategies. Beyond Kenya, the company has started working in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, Nigeria and Ethiopia.
“We are delighted that the first beneficiary of our African initiative is a recognized player providing access to operators’ APIs. We believe that is it essential to support every initiative that aims to make these APIs more accessible to entrepreneurs in Africa. The expansion of these mobile services is one of the key ways to help generate new innovations that will have an impact on the continent. What is more, this investment strengthens Orange’s position as the leader in the ongoing mobile revolution. We look forward to seeing Africa’s Talking accelerate its pan-African expansion,” said Marc Rennard, Chairman of Orange Digital Ventures.
“This new round of fundraising will enable us to grow our pan-African community of Software Developers building businesses that consume communication and payment services. In this context, the arrival of Orange Digital Ventures is excellent news for Africa’s Talking. We intend to leverage this relationship to accelerate our expansion in countries where Orange is present and launch new products that deepen the engagement of Orange with Software Developers,” said Samuel Gikandi, CEO and co-founder of Africa’s Talking.
Africa’s Talking is currently the leading company providing access to telecom operators’ communication and payment APIs (programming interfaces) for developers. Based in Kenya, East Africa, Africa’s Talking is widely regarded as the favourite solution of many Kenyan startups and over 15,000 developers, many of which rely on these APIs including SMS, voice and USSD to design services that are revolutionizing financial, energy, health and insurance services among others.