LIST | A Look at the Top 10 Leading Venture Firms Across Africa in 2023

This article delves into the top 10 active investors in Africa for the year 2023, exploring their funding strategies, key sectors of interest, and notable startups in their portfolios.

Despite challenging macro-economic trends, 2023 witnessed a surge in activity from venture capital firms dedicated to fueling innovation and growth across the continent.

From the bustling fintech hubs to the burgeoning health-tech and agri-tech sectors, numerous investors played pivotal roles in shaping Africa’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

This article delves into the top 10 active investors in Africa for the year 2023, exploring their funding strategies, key sectors of interest, and notable startups in their portfolios.



1.) TechStars Accelerator

TechStars operates more than 40 accelerators worldwide, with a presence in Lagos. African startups have predominantly been admitted to accelerators such as:

  • Techstars Barclays Accelerator
  • Techstars Toronto, and
  • Techstars New York

on different occasions.

In 2023, Techstars Toronto welcomed 10 African startups, while ARM Labs Techstars Accelerator accepted 12 startups. TechStars places a particular emphasis on startups in sectors such as Fintech, Proptech, e-Commerce, MobilityTech, and TalentTech.

Selected startups fortunate enough to be part of Techstars receive a $120,000 cheque along with tailored startup programming and entry to Techstars’ extensive network, comprising over 7,000 mentors, 20,000 investors, alumni, and corporate partners.

Notable startups within Techstars’ portfolio include CDCare,, Salad, Sidebrief, and Vittas.


2.) Ventures Platform

Ventures Platform is an early-stage venture capital fund founded in 2016 by Kola Aina. The firm focuses on investing in startups across various sectors, including:

  • Agritech
  • e-Commerce
  • SaaS
  • EdTech
  • InsurTech
  • AutoTech
  • HealthTech
  • FoodTech
  • Logistics
  • Embedded Fintech

Ventures Platform initially had a cheque size capped at $50,000. However, in 2021, the venture capital firm raised a $40 million pan-African fund, leading to a significant change. Now, Ventures Platform can invest more than $1 million in pre-seed and seed startups, including follow-on rounds.

In 2023, Ventures Platform made investments in 12 startups. Noteworthy startups in their portfolio include:

  • Piggyvest
  • Paystack
  • Bitnob
  • Bloc, and
  • Brass



3.) Catalyst Fund

The Catalyst Fund operates as both a pre-seed fund and an accelerator, supporting high-impact tech startups focused on enhancing the resilience of underserved and climate-vulnerable communities in emerging markets. The accelerator specifically invests in sectors such as:

  • Agritech
  • CleanTech
  • Edtech
  • Insurtech, and
  • e-Commerce

The Catalyst Fund provides grants ranging from $2,500 to $15,000 to individuals and startups operating in the fields of climate resilience, inclusive fintech, and digital commerce.

Backed by notable institutional investors such as:

  • JPMorgan Chase & Co.
  • Mastercard Foundation, and
  • Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors,

the Catalyst Fund invested in 10 startups in 2023.

Some of the startups in their portfolio include:

  • Indicina
  • Jetstream
  • Lami
  • Turaco, and
  • Wasoko



4.) Launch Africa

Launch Africa operates as a pan-African venture capital fund aimed at addressing the funding gap within the investment landscape in Africa. The company focuses on tech-enabled startups across the African continent with a mission to tackle the challenges faced by everyday Africans and entrepreneurs in various sectors.

Launch Africa commits to investments ranging between $200,000 and $300,000 in startups. Established in 2020, the firm has a preference for startups operating in:

  • B2B
  • B2C
  • Fintech
  • Edtech, and
  • Enterprise solutions

In 2023, Launch Africa invested in nine startups, including:

  • Gameball
  • Workpay
  • Credable
  • Chekkit, and
  • Balad


5.) Voltron Capital


Voltron Capital is a venture capital firm with a focus on investing in early-stage companies, particularly in the:

  • Fintech
  • Edtech, and
  • Healthtech


The firm is driven by a mission to support exceptional entrepreneurs across Africa who are dedicated to addressing significant challenges within sizable markets.

Voltron Capital provides companies in its portfolio with investments ranging from $20,000 to $100,000.

Notable startups in Voltron Capital’s portfolio include:

  • Allawee
  • Bamba
  • Altschool
  • Bujeti, and
  • Chargel

In the year 2023, Voltron Capital made investments in eight startups.



6.) Y Combinator

Y Combinator (YC) stands out as one of the most successful accelerator programs globally. Their cohort-based program is renowned for offering funding, mentorship, and valuable connections, providing essential support to founders throughout the entire lifecycle of their companies.

Startups accepted into Y Combinator’s prestigious program receive $500,000 in funding, structured as $125,000 for 7% equity and an additional $375,000 through an uncapped SAFE note.

YC has a broad investment focus, supporting startups across various sectors including:

  • SaaS
  • B2B
  • e-Commerce
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • FinTech
  • Edtech
  • Analytics, and more.

Notable African startups in YC’s portfolio include:

  • Flutterwave
  • Prospa
  • Nomba
  • ChowDeck
  • Kobo360

among others.

In the year 2023, YC extended its support to seven African startups.



7.) International Finance Corporation

Over the past six decades, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has made significant investments exceeding $60 billion in African businesses.

As the sister organization of the World Bank and a member of the World Bank Group, the IFC provides support to startups in sectors such as:

  • Agritech
  • Cleantech
  • Healthtech
  • Edtech, and
  • e-Commerce

Notable startups in the IFC’s portfolio include:

  • Kobo360
  • Lulalend
  • Naked
  • Nuru
  • Anka, and
  • CSquared

In the year 2023, the IFC invested in five Africab startups.



8.) Azur Innovation Management

Azur Innovation Management (AIM) is a public-private seed fund established as part of the Innov Invest Initiative, initiated by the Moroccan government in 2016.

AIM aims to collaborate with startups that possess the determination and potential to pursue ambitious, innovative, and disruptive projects.

The Azur Innovation Management (AIM) fund directs its investments towards Moroccan startups in various sectors, including:

  • Fintech
  • Healthtech
  • Agritech
  • Biotech
  • Internet, and
  • Software

Among the startups in this fund’s portfolio are:

  • KoolSkools
  • Blinkpharma
  • Agenz
  • BGEN Technology, and
  • Presta Freedom

In the year 2023, the Azur Innovation Fund invested in four African startups.


9.) Renew Capital

Renew Capital is an impact investment firm that supports innovative companies with high-growth potential. Founded in 2007 and based in Ethiopia, Renew Capital operates as an African-focused firm.

It runs exchange hubs across sub-Saharan Africa, engaging in activities such as organizing capital, building a pipeline of investment opportunities, providing executive training programs, and offering support to investments.

Renew Capital concentrates its investment efforts on startups in the:

  • Mobility
  • e-Commerce, and
  • Healthtech

sectors, typically investing an average of $228,000.

Notable African startups in Renew Capital’s portfolio include:

  • Badili
  • Wazi, and
  • Xente

In the year 2023, Renew Capital made investments in four African startups.



10.) DOB Equity

DOB Equity is a venture capital firm headquartered in the Netherlands with a focus on investing in innovative and impactful businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The firm specifically targets scalable, innovative, and high-impact companies that address social and environmental challenges, with a particular emphasis on the East African region.

DOB Equity typically provides funding in the range of $250,000 to $3 million for startups in sectors such as:

  • Fintech
  • Healthtech
  • Agritech, and
  • Edtech

In the year 2023, DOB Equity invested in four African startups. Notable startups in the firm’s portfolio include:

  • Kwara
  • Power
  • Victory Farms
  • Zydii, and
  • Zuri Health




Follow us on Twitter for the latest posts and updates

Join and interact with our Telegram community