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Top 20 Most Funded Startups in Africa in 2023

The startup funding landscape in Africa in 2023 was a mixed bag of encouraging growth and cautious optimism amidst global economic headwinds.

While not surpassing the record-breaking years of 2021 and 2022, Africa still witnessed over $5 billion in startup funding in 2023.

This indicates a maturing ecosystem with sustained investor interest.

Compared to the first half of 2022, funding in the first half of 2023 dipped, raising concerns about a potential slowdown. However, the second half saw a slight uptick, suggesting resilience.

Our analysis of the top 20 most funded startups in Africa reveals a fascinating story of innovation, ambition, and a continent brimming with potential.

Let’s delve into the key trends and insights:

Fintech Dominates: A Catalyst for Inclusion

With eight fintech companies in the top 20, it’s clear that financial technology is revolutionizing Africa.

MNT-Halan’s $400 million haul, including a historic $200 million from Chimera Investments, catapulted it to Egypt’s first unicorn status.

This signifies investor belief in fintech’s ability to bridge the financial gap, empowering millions of unbanked Africans with access to essential financial services.

Cleantech and Agritech: Building a Sustainable Future

Husk Power, Wetility, Nuru, and WeLight’s impressive funding demonstrates Africa’s commitment to clean energy solutions.

These startups are providing reliable, affordable power to off-grid and underserved communities, paving the way for a greener future.

Similarly, Victory Farms’ $35 million investment highlights the potential of agritech to transform Africa’s food systems, ensuring food security and empowering rural communities.

Beyond Fintech: A Diverse Landscape of Innovation

While fintech and cleantech steal the spotlight, the presence of e-commerce startups (Sabi and SAMANU), gaming startup (Carry1st), healthtech (Yodawy), and insurtech (Naked Insurance) showcases the breadth of African innovation.

These startups are addressing critical needs in their respective sectors, proving that Africa’s entrepreneurial spirit extends far beyond a single domain.

Challenges and Opportunities: The Road Ahead

Despite the impressive funding numbers, challenges remain.

Access to capital, particularly for early-stage startups, is still limited.

Building robust infrastructure, nurturing talent, and fostering a supportive regulatory environment are crucial to unlocking Africa’s full potential.

However, the opportunities are equally vast. A growing middle class, a vast untapped market, and a young, tech-savvy population create fertile ground for startups to thrive.

With continued support from investors, governments, and global players, Africa’s startup ecosystem can become the engine driving inclusive economic growth and positive social change.

The top 20 funded startups are just a glimpse into the incredible talent and potential brewing across Africa.

This year laid the groundwork for an exciting future.

With continued support for early-stage ventures, infrastructure development, and talent building, Africa’s startup ecosystem can become a global powerhouse, driving inclusive growth and positive change.

Here are the top 20 most-funded startups in Africa in 2023:

1. MNT-Halan – $400 million

Egypt’s MNT-Halan was the most funded startup after it raised $400 million in equity and debt financing from local and global investors in January.

A large chunk of the equity, about $200 million, was provided by Abu Dhabi–based Chimera Investments.

2. M-KOPA – $250 million

In May, M-KOPA, the asset financing platform that offers underbanked African customers access to “productive assets” and the ability to pay for them via digital micropayments, has secured more than $250 million in new funding.

The capital injection included $55 million in equity and over $200 million in debt.

3. Husk Power – $103 million

In October, Husk Power Systems, a cleantech startup operating in Africa and Asia, successfully raised $103 million in its Series D funding round to drive rural electrification and expand renewable energy services in the two regions.

4. Planet42 – $100 million

The Estonia-founded but South Africa-based startup announced a $100 million raise in February to scale operations across South Africa and Mexico.

5. MOOVE – $84 million

In 2023, MOOVE raised two rounds of funding- initially securing $8,000,000 to expand to Ghana and then $76,000,000 to strengthen its position on the global stage.

6. Wetility – $48 million

The South African-based platform raised $48 million in September 2023 to accelerate its expansion plans.

7. Nuru – $40 million

In July, Nuru raised a Series B round of $40 million to build the biggest mini-grid in sub-Saharan Africa.

8. Sabi – $38 million

Nigeria’s Sabi raised $38 million in Series B funding in May to enhance its technological infrastructure.

Frankfurt-based fintech investor CommerzVentures, Norrsken22, Fluent Ventures and Proof VC and pan-African early-stage investors CRE Venture Capital and Janngo Capital were some of the investors in this round

9. Lulalend – $35 million

In February, Lulalend, a South African digital lender catering to underserved small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), raised a $35 million Series B funding round to help it scale its business.

10. Victory Farms – $35 million

11. LemFi – $33 million

12. Peach Payments – $31 million

13. Nomba – $30 million

14. Carry1st – $27 million

15. SAMANU – $21 Million

16. WeLight – $20 million

17. Naked Insurance – $17 million

18. Yodawy – $16million

19. Yellow – $14 Million

20. Jetstream Africa – $13 million

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