The future of tech in Africa relies heavily on the venture capital (VC) ecosystem. This means as more people take on projects to solve problems with technology in Africa, the bulk of bringing those ideas to fruition rests on financiers such as VCs
Ever since the emergence of the contemporary limited partnership venture capital fund in the 1960s, venture capital has emerged as the most triumphant and impactful approach to funding innovation. Over the past several decades, venture capital funding played a vital role in fostering the budding computer industry and the subsequent booms in e-commerce, mobile technology, and software development.
VCs are so strongly linked to innovation as seen in the big five. These companies which include Google, Microsoft, Facebook/Meta, Amazon and Alphabet not only have a history of being funded heavily in its early stages by VCs but are taking the initiative to partner with startups or fund new companies to partner in the new wave of innovation.
For instance, The Alexa Fund, the venture capital fund of Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), allocates up to $200 million to invest in voice technology companies. Venture capital constitutes merely one aspect of Amazon’s approach to the advancement of voice-assisted technology. Regarding mergers and acquisitions, the company acquired Graphiq, a data analysis and search engine company specialising in aggregating and structuring product information to facilitate seamless verbal responses for users. We also have Alphabet Inc.’s Gradient Ventures, a VC arm that launched in 2017 and focuses on early-stage AI startups.
For the benefit of the entire continent, successful entrepreneurs and startups must understand that the job is truly just starting.
Professionals who understand business, business models and innovation should take up the initiative to invest in the continent alongside their other businesses. The growth of Africa is for the benefit of Africans.
The future we envision requires capital and we must all work together to unlock the continent’s potential.