Future Africa Review 2021 – A Look at the Defining Themes for the Startup Ecosystem

Future Africa Review 2021 – A Look at the Defining Themes for the Startup Ecosystem
January 25, 2022 Peter Kisadha
Future Africa End of Year Report 2021

We are excited to launch the first edition of the Future Africa Review, our end of year report, which gives insight into the African startup ecosystem for 2021. The purpose of this report is to spark difficult but meaningful and transparent conversations about Africa’s future. 

What to expect:

The first section gives a condensed overview of our fund and portfolio performance. The second section dives into the notable themes of the African startup ecosystem in 2021. Although much happened, we believe these four themes stood out. We point out their significance for the ecosystem’s future and offer insights into turning challenges into opportunities.


Key Insights:

1.The war for tech talent has led to wage inflation for developing economies, and it can’t be won with salaries alone; startups need to build their talent pipelines. In addition, we believe that academic institutions can change their educational models to support students going into tech. Also, the government can partner with ecosystem stakeholders to grow the technical talent base.

2.The need for financial inclusion and established infrastructure has contributed largely to the fintech boom in Africa. We expect the fintech industry to continue to attract funding until it reaches maturity. To benefit from this fintech boom, startups with the right business model can consider integrating a financial infrastructure layer into their operations. 

3.The emergence of name brand venture capitalists will strongly signify to previously passive international investors. In addition, these global VCs will help establish a cycle in Africa’s ecosystem and make room for more growth-stage investments and exits. 

4.Valuations for African startups are moving towards higher trajectories. African founders are developing a proper understanding of the market and tailoring their solutions to meet these market needs, increasing the quality of startups on the continent. To avoid being outpriced, investors looking to snag early-stage deals at favourable valuations have to improve their investment strategy and fund these startups while they are still young.

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Watch: A conversation on Future Africa’s fund 2021 performance and defining themes

Join the Future Africa Collective to invest in African startups. With your $300 quarterly subscription fee or $1000 annually, you get access to invest a minimum of $2,500 in up to 20 African startups annually or up to 5 startups quarterly. 


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