Yinka here, I trust you are keeping safe.
The Central African Republic (CAR) recently launched the Sango Coin, a cryptocurrency. The CAR is pushing for cryptocurrency adoption, with the country’s parliament unanimously voting in favour of a bill recognising Bitcoin as a reference currency in April 2022.
The CAR is currently the only African country with a national cryptocurrency of some sort. The closest any other country on the continent has come is launching a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), with Nigeria the only nation to have successfully launched one as of May 2022. South Africa is currently in its pilot stage.
Seventeen African countries are currently at different points in their CBDC journeys. Nigeria launched its CBDC, the eNaira, in October 2021; however, nine months later, there is only hope of mass adoption following the eNaira’s dismal performance.
Intelligence conducted a Twitter poll about eNaira adoption in April 2022. The discouraging results showed that only 1.3% of the 157 respondents claimed to have done a transaction on the eNaira Speed Wallet.
On another note, the Nigerian eCommerce space has raised over $1.2 billion in funding to date, and as promised in our last newsletter, we looked at selected players in the space. You can read the story here.
In this edition:
- African startups raised $174.77 million in July 2022
- African countries that are close to becoming the most populous nations in the world
- Insights from social media
- Intelligence project updates
African startups raised $174.77 million in July 2022
Twenty-two African startups raised a combined $174.77 million in July 2022, 21% lower than June 2022. As with the first half of the year, Financial Services startups accounted for most of the amount raised.
With Wave’s $92.1 million debt financing responsible for over half of the amount raised, Senegal tops the list of highest raisers, followed by Egypt and Nigeria, with 21.5% and 14.5%, respectively.
- Total announced deals in July 2022 – $174.77 million
- Financial Services received $107.79 million, 61.7% of the amount raised
- Senegal had the largest share with $92.1 million
- Other top African countries
- Egyptian startups raised $37.6 million
- Nigerian startups raised $24.41 million
- 22 disclosed funding deals
- 7 seed rounds
- 6 pre-seed rounds
- Top deals of the month
- Wave’s $92.1 million debt financing
- Homzmart’s $23 million Series A
- Moove’s $20 million financing
- Cartona’s $12 million Series A
NB: The figure for June 2022 above differs from the one in our June newsletter because of an omission.
Other African updates
The demo for the Summer 2022 cohort of Y Combinator’s accelerator programme is slated for September 2022. So far, only five of the 168 startups with a profile on Y Combinator’s platform are from Africa. ICYMI: here’s a report about the activities of Y Combinator in Africa since 2009.
- AfricInvest, in partnership with Cathay Innovation, completed the final round investment of €110million for their Pan-African Venture fund, Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund (CAIF)
- Seedstars announced its first close of $30m emerging market seed-stage fund
- Catalyst Fund got $3.5m from FSD Africa to accelerate and scale pre-seed impact ventures in Africa
- Newly launched FrontEnd Ventures is backed by a $5 million fund to invest in Kenyan startups
- Zedcrest Capital has launched a $10 million fund for pre-Series A stage startups in Africa
- Autochek acquires CoinAfrique for its Francophone expansion drive
- Egyptian startup Swvl acquires Mexico’s mobility startup, Urbvan
- Bloc, a Nigerian fintech firm, acquires payment company, Orchestrate
African countries that are close to becoming the most populous nations in the world
The National Population Commission (NPC), in July 2022, reportedly did a two-week trial census in six states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, in the build-up to the 2023 national headcount. The trial census is meant to give a basis for evaluating aspects of the census operations next year.
Worldometers puts Nigeria’s population at 216.7m which is 80% higher than the figures of the last population census in Nigeria, 2006, which had the country’s population at 140.4 million.
Nigeria currently ranks first in Africa and seventh in the world in terms of population; it is also the only African country among the top ten in the world, with Ethiopia (12th), Egypt (14th), and DR Congo (16th) in the top 20 as of 2020.
Population projections for 2050 put Nigeria in the third spot with 401 million. Expectations are that it will overtake the United States of America, Indonesia, Pakistan, and Brazil, which currently have higher populations. Ethiopia and DR Congo are also expected to join Nigeria in the top 10, with Egypt (11th), Tanzania (15th), and Kenya (20th) in the top 20.
African countries have a higher population growth rate than other regions, with 19 of the 21 countries with population growth rates of 2.75% and above in 2020 coming from the continent.
What does this population explosion mean for the affected countries? Expectedly, this growth will increase demand for basic needs like food, housing, and public healthcare. Also, entrepreneurs who create their pitch decks with an African population of over a billion in mind must make adjustments while factoring in the purchasing power of the increased population.
From our social media
- Big Brother Naija’s grand prize went from ₦100k in 2006 to ₦100m in 2022; check it out.
- Europe is the top destination for Nigeria's crude oil exports; a little more here.
- More than half of our respondents believe therapy is extremely helpful
- Inflation rates across Africa
- The Intelligence by Techpoint website is still being revamped, and you can help by replying to this email with a feature you would like us to include.
- The State of Insurance in Nigeria: We almost have all that input we need from insurance companies to move ahead with this.
- We are working on making this newsletter better. Please share your thoughts by filling out this short four-question survey.
- We have revisited our previously suspended mini-report about Africa's blockchain space and plan to release it as soon as possible.
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Do have a nice day.
Feature image credit: Tope A. Asokere from Pexels