Japanese VC Samurai Incubate has made 6 African investments so far this year


Japan-based VC Samurai Incubate has made six investments in African tech startups across various countries and stages so far this year.

Founded in 2008, Samurai Incubate has launched and managed six funds in Japan, through which it has backed around 130 startups. Samurai Incubate Africa was established in May 2018, and has so far invested in 31 African startups.

The company, which recently closed out its second fund at over JP¥2 billion (US$18.4 million), has already made six investments in 2021. Three of those startups are from Nigeria – agri-tech startup Releaf, e-health platform Medsaf, and e-commerce service Pricepally.

Also backed were two Egyptian startups – browser-based shopping service Wasla Browser and cloud kitchen platform The Food Lab – as well as Kenyan fintech startup Kwara.

Having primarily focused on Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria until closing its second fund, Samurai Incubate recently expanded its focus to include Egypt, and also increased its maximum amount of investment to JP¥80 million (US$736,000) in order to meet the needs of a wider range of companies. It targets industries such as fintech, logistics, healthcare, e-commerce, energy, agri-tech, mobility and entertainment.

You can read our interview with Rena Yoneyama, managing director of Samurai Incubate Africa, as part of our Meet the Investor series here.


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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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