AfricInvest, VC firm Cathay Innovation close US$112m Pan-African Venture fund

AFRICAInvestment company AfricInvest and venture capital firm Cathay Innovation, have announced the final close of their joint Pan-African Venture fund, Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund (CAIF) at €110 million (US$112.53m).

The fund is backed by LPs such as EIB, AfricaGrow, FMO, Bpifrance, Triodos Investment Management, Proparco, SIFEM, BIO and, among others, as well as a diverse pool of globally renowned investors, including Development finance institutions, leading multinational corporations, and high-net-worth individuals across Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

Just recently, Cathay Innovation announced that it was targeting to raise €1 billion (US$1.02bn) for its third fund to invest in growth and later-stage companies across Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia. Within the last three months, the fund launched two sister entities: a US$110 million crypto fund and a US$500 million health fund.

With the close of the fund, the CAIF team said they will significantly deepen their focus on investing in the most promising early to growth-stage startups with disruptive tech-enabled products and services.

With initial check sizes ranging from €1-10 million (US$1.02-10.23m) for growth-stage and up to €1 million (US$1.02m) for select seed-stage tickets, the fund invests in startups across multiple sectors, including Fintech, Mobility, HealthTech, EdTech, AI, Digital Content and AgTech.

Since its inception in October 2019, CAIF has backed ten companies operating across the continent, including 54gene, OZÉ, Migo, PalmPay, Heetch, KaiOS, Boomplay, Aerobotics, and WhereIsMyTransport. Most recently, the fund co-led Tunisia-based EdTech startup GoMyCode’s US$8 million Series A round.

AfricInvest was launched in 1994 with physical presence across 11 regions through offices including Abidjan, Algier, Cairo, Casablanca, Lagos, Nairobi, and Tunis.

The firm has over 200 portfolio companies across 25 African countries in a variety of high-growth sectors, of which 106 have exited, AfricInvest has, to date, raised over US$2 billion AUM across 21 funds.

Founded in 2015, Cathay Innovation is a leading venture capital firm supporting entrepreneurs across North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa. With over €2 billion (US$2.05bn) assets under management and offices across 3 continents, Cathay Innovation has invested in over 120 global investments, including 19 unicorns.

In May this year AfricInvest raised US$411 million in a new fund for investments in mid-sized companies in African countries.

The newly closed fund, dubbed AfricInvest IV, was the largest the firm has raised, eclipsing the US$300 million (KSh35 billion) it raised from the previous flagship fund, AfricInvest III, which closed in 2016.

AfricInvest said the round of funding come from new and returning institutional investors, development finance institutions, and family offices from around the world.

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