Predictions for 2019 – what the investors said

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With 2019 just around the corner, Disrupt Africa chatted to Africa’s investor community about what the new year has in store for the ecosystem.  Here’s a selection of predictions for 2019 from investor around the continent.

Tidjane Dème, general partner at Partech, managing the Partech Africa fund:

“We expect mostly more of the same good things.  We are looking forward to seeing more action in the investment sector, as more local teams raise funds for early stage companies.

However, on the startup front, the spotlight will be less on the seed stage: new should be less about  “This is the first African startup to do X”, and more about startups achieving significant growth milestone and maturity.  

Finally, we are confident that, as African markets are established as an exciting tech frontier,  great talent will converge on the continent. And 2019 might be the year where this phenomenon attracts attention.”

Andrea Böhmert, co-managing partner, Knife Capital:

“As a result of the increase in maturity of the ecosystem, I predict 2019 to be a fantastic year for the ecosystem. I see a record year in terms of investments made as a lot of money needs to be placed. I expect some high profile success stories. I also hope (and yes, hope is not a strategy) that all the engagements, conversations, indabas and conferences that talk about stimulating the economy, and supporting entrepreneurship, will finally result in clear actions, decisions and optimal allocation of resources.”

Yele Bademosi, founder and managing partner, Microtraction:

“We’ll see later stage funds write smaller checks or go even earlier to close the pre-seed and seed funding gaps – because that’s still a problem in the ecosystem. I also expect more funds to be announced – so hopefully an entrepreneur would have access to capital locally without the need to go to the valley.”

Nico Blaauw, director for marketing, Goodwell Investments:

“Ever more PE and VC investors will be attracted by growth opportunities in Africa.  Convergence will result in new businesses combining proven models and technologies that allow fast implementation and scale up; while we also expect a growing interest in the logistics and transportation sector as catalyst and facilitator of economic growth.  There will be further integration of the digital ecosystem with the physical world in order to scale to mass populations.

We also expect growing partnerships to scale across regions and expand footprint;  the expansion of investment focus in new geographies as “silent giants” emerge for new opportunities; and further discussions on rapid digital lending and the need for responsible investments.”

Justin Stanford, co-founding general partner, 4Di Capital:

“It seems that fintech is starting to mature as a theme, and the next theme which is now rising is insuretech, and perhaps agtech too. We have seen a noticeable increase of activity in the insuretech vertical in particular recently. Another trend which is picking up steam is the rise of corporate investment, from banks, insurers and other institutions looking to acquire a stake in the disruption space.”

Clive Butkow, chief executive officer, Kalon Venture Partners:

“I think we’ll see more of the same as were the highlights from 2018; far more capital being deployed to African tech startups for both seed and growth capital; and an increase in the number of entrepreneurs seeing entrepreneurship as a viable career path.”

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Inspired and excited by the African tech entrepreneurial scene, Gabriella spends her time travelling around the continent to report on the most innovative tech startups, the most active investors, and the latest trends emerging in the ecosystem.

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