African diaspora-founded startup MySIMAX has secured US$200,000 in funding for the development of its social e-marketplace focusing on digital learning.
The MySIMAX Club platform will ask users to upload blogs, articles and participate in discussions, in return for which they will receive “commendations” from other users. These commendations function as online store credits, and allow users to buy access to e-books and other digital learning materials. Users can also top up their balance using cash.
According to MySIMAX, the idea is to create an “e-platform based on meritocracy for African students”.
MySIMAX received the US$200,000 funding from a former director of China’s popular e-commerce platform Alibaba, although the investor wishes to remain anonymous.
“Coming from my background, when I saw MySIMAX’s demo and the team behind it, it was rather easy to foresee how far it could go and the impact it could have on people. It is disruptive and I like it! So I wanted to be one of the first to invest in what can become a social Alibaba for Africa. It’s very exciting,” the investor says.
The founder of MySIMAX, J.X. Paulin, has substantial experience of working in China, and says investors in the country are increasingly eager to get involved in Africa-oriented projects.
“Some Chinese tech investors are starting to look at Africa because it has a tremendous potential for growth, like China had years ago. It is great to be able to benefit from their expertise,” Paulin says.
The investment is intended to support the setup of the platform, and partnership building with content providers for the platform
The platform is set to launch on September 15.