In an interview with our French colleagues from “La Tribune”, the French group Orange details the outlines of its new fund dedicated to start-ups on the continent.
There had been the entry into the capital of the African e-commerce group Africa Internet Group, the acquisition of a stake in Afrimarket, which allows the diaspora to have everyday consumer goods delivered to their friends and family, or still entering the Afrostream video on demand service. Orange will further formalize its interest in African entrepreneurs.
Deputy CEO of Orange, and in particular in charge of investments in start-ups, Pierre Louette explained Thursday in the columns of our colleagues from La Tribune the outlines of a fund dedicated to African entrepreneurs including the Africa boss of Orange.
But the latter then spoke of 40 million euros, for Orange Digital Ventures Africa. Pierre Louette now mentions the amount of 50 million euros. “Half of this envelope will be invested in funds specializing in digital on this continent. We will manage this money with two partners: the Partech Ventures funds [where the former Africa boss of Google landed at the end of the year] and AfricInvest [Tunisian capital-investor], “he told the business newspaper.
25 million euros invested directly
“The other half of these 50 million will allow us to invest directly […] in companies that we have selected ourselves in sectors that are close to our hearts, such as health or telecoms”. Each selected company will be able to benefit from capital contributions of up to 3 million euros.
According to Pierre Louette’s statements to La Tribune, the operator’s objective is to “develop [its] own ecosystem”, alongside the seed fund Orange Digital Ventures (which had invested in Afrimarket and Afrostream), created in 2015 and whose investment portfolio would reach 100 million euros according to the figure promoted by Orange. Orange Digital Ventures Africa has therefore come, just like Orange Digital Ventures, to position itself under the leadership of Orange Digital Investment, an internal structure of the telecommunications group which manages all its participations in entrepreneurship (Africa Internet Group but also Deezer, Dailymotion).