French development finance institution Proparco has acquired a US$5 million stake in the TLcom TIDE Africa Fund, which will provide financing for innovative startups that leverage new technology to improve access to essential services.
Disrupt Africa reported in June last year TLcom Capital announced commitments to its TIDE Africa Fund, focused exclusively on technology-enabled solutions and innovation serving Sub-Saharan Africa, had hit US$40 million.
The TIDE Africa Fund will provide capital and business building support to African entrepreneurs developing technology-driven solutions to the continent’s problems, and will make equity investments from early to growth stage in the US$500,000 to US$10 million range.
Proparco has now joined the likes of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) in taking a stake in the fund, which it said would allow the TIDE Africa Fund to provide venture capital for startups on a continent where venture capital is still in its infancy.
“The TLcom team will draw on its solid experience of supporting innovative start-ups and a sophisticated understanding of the African startup ecosystem to invest in around 15 businesses, each under five years old, all of which have got beyond the prototype and marketing authorisation stages in order to help them grow and scale up,” Proparco said.