2021 was a year in which foreign investors recognized the country’s Tech Startups as a promising investment platform.
Nigerian digital businesses have attracted a growing number of international investors, with funding totaling over $1,125,025,000 in 2021.
In fact, after hitting a $1 billion valuation, some Nigerian digital businesses such as Flutterwave, Opay, and Andela joined the Unicons gang in the financial industry in 2021.
As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, digital adoption by both consumers and businesses has surged beyond expectations
We looked at some of the digital businesses that raised money and received investments in 2021. The data was compiled from company profiles and the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council.
1. After raising $400 million, OPay is valued at $2 billion.
In 2021, Opay received the greatest percentage of technology funds among peers. It raised $400 million in fresh Fund 2 funding in August of last year, led by SoftBank Vision Asia, Sequoia Capital China, Redpoint China, and Source Code Capital.
The latest capital comes two years after the mobile money and payment network announced two funding rounds in 2019. In June, it raised $50 million, then in November, it raised $120 million in a Series B round.
Founded in 2018, the company initially focused on Nigeria before expanding to Egypt in 2020.
Through its agents, Opay enables unbanked and underbanked customers in Nigeria to send and receive money as well as pay bills.
2. Mainone was sold for $320 million.
Mainone was formed in 2010 by Funke Opeke with the goal of providing network solutions to businesses in Nigeria and West Africa.
Equinix, an American multinational corporation, purchased it for $320 million in December, but Opeke’s staff is not backing down.
According to Opeke, the acquisition will help the company achieve its long-term goal of expanding digital infrastructure investments across Africa.
3. Andela has raised $200 million.
The startup was formed in 2014 by Ian Carnevale, Nigerian Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, Jeremy Johnson, and Christina Sass.
Andela’s corporate headquarters are in New York, with operating campuses in Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya.
After closing a $200 million Series E round in September, Andela is now valued at $1.5 billion. SoftBank’s Softbank Vision Fund 2 spearheaded the fundraising.
4. Flutterwave Raises $170 Million
Olugbenga Agboola, Flutterwave CEO Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, Olugbenga Agboola, After receiving a $170 million Series C financing, Agboola’s Flutterwave became a unicorn (valued at $1 billion) in March 2021.
Avenir Growth Capital of New York and Tiger Global, a hedge fund and investment business located in the United States, led the deal.
Flutterwave, a Nigerian and US-based payments startup with operations in Lagos and San Francisco, was created by Agboola in 2016.
Through its APIs, the company specializes in assisting businesses in developing customizable payment applications.
5. Kuda Bank has raised $80 million.
Kuda Bank, a four-year-old Nigerian digital retail bank, has collected $80 from investors thanks to its objective of providing free digital banking services.
In August 2021, the Lagos and London-based business closed a $55 million Series B round.
Babs Ogundeyi and Musty Mustapha, who co-founded the company in 2017, hope that the money will allow them to improve service in Nigeria while also expanding beyond the continent’s largest economy.
The company is now worth $500 million. It had raised $25 million in a series B round of funding headed by Valar Ventures and Global.
6. $26.5 million Decagon
Decagon, a digital firm founded by Chika Nwobi that combines lending, training, and job placement to assist people start careers as software engineers, has acquired $1.5 million in venture funding from early-stage investors and a $25 million student loan financing facility from Sterling Bank.
Decagon’s founder stated that the company’s goal is to address the global underrepresentation of black people in technology, with a concentration on Nigeria.
The organization recruits people through a six-month software engineering program.