The European Investment Bank (EIB) has made available some $20 million investment facility to Adlevo Capital Africa LLC to support the growing number of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) enterprises in the African sub-region.
The Adlevo Capital Africa LLC is the first private equity fund dedicated to high-tech industry in sub-Saharan Africa.
The fund will target the ICT market in a systematic and dedicated manner and support the high-tech sector as well as promote the development of high level Africa-based fund managers.
Kelechi Onyemaobi, press and information officer of the European delegation to Nigeria, said the fund is principally meant for the development of technology in the continent, adding that it will focus on investment in high-growth firms with technology business models in Nigeria, West Africa and South Africa, where he said recent economic developments increase demand for ICT services.
Adlevo, he explained, hopes to address the limited availability of risk capital for African technology companies, recognizing that under-investment in the sector may hamper growth in emerging economies.
Plutarachos Sakellaris, EIB vice president, who is responsible for lending operations in the African, Caribbean and Pacific regions, described the move as a landmark project for EIB and the African technology sector.
According to him, "we are confident that Adlevo’s experienced management will build a portfolio of investments which provide strategic support for technology companies. Moreover, we hope that this operation will act as a catalyst to develop private equity and foreign direct investment (FDI) in the region."
Sakellaris said Adlevo’s fund is of particular importance to the economies of sub-Saharan Africa due to its sectoral focus, saying ICT investment in the region will allow African businesses to gain competitive advantages and boost economic growth.