Safaricom in November 2014 launched a venture fund that invest in late seed to early growth stage support start-ups that use mobile technology as an enabler.
The Fund is a venture capital fund that aims to support the successful development and growth of high potential mobile tech start-ups in Kenya through a combination of investment, business development support and technical assistance leveraging on Safaricom’s unique capabilities, assets and market positioning.
The Total fund size will be USD 1 Million (~KSH 90 Million) that will be provided for a minority equity stake or as convertible debt to selected start-ups with an average ticket ranging between KES 6 Million – KES 22 Million.
The start-ups will be identified, selected and provided with post investment support by the fund manager TBL Invest, a partner of Safaricom and upon completion of due diligence process be presented to the Investment Committee for funding consideration. The Investment committee consists of representatives of Safaricom Limited and TBL Invest.
Following investment approval, the funds will be disbursed, where the fund manager will represent the fund in the start-ups board and will provide mentorship and support towards implementation of the agreed strategic plan.
Spark Fund Objectives
- To transform the lives of Mobile ICT start-ups and developers by providing a platform for business capacity building and economic empowerment.
- To support the development and scale up of commercially viable mobile-based technology start-ups which through partnership can scale and grow
- To transform the lives of customers by identifying and providing relevant attractive mobile solutions that meet their needs
- Safaricom is committed toward supporting local based ICT start-ups grow.
- In addition to the fund, partnering with Safaricom will also provide the start-ups with a host of other resources such as the following;
- Access to technical assistance allowing them to grow and competitively compete with other companies in the industry.
- A wide network of mentors and valuable industry knowledge
- In-Kind support such as; SMS USSD access, API’s and integration services, cloud hosting and marketing opportunities.
- Exposure to Safaricom’s partner network.