Africa FDI Impact Investment Investing Startup Tech Venture Capital

Salesforce Ventures announce US$100M impact fund for African tech start-ups

Salesforce Ventures has announced a second impact investment fund amounting to US$100M. Salesforce Ventures is the investment arm of Salesforce, a company involved in customer relationship management. The fund is the second to come from the company after an initial US$50M impact fund which was launched in 2017.

The funds are earmarked for supporting start-up companies mainly in the technology sphere and cloud-related services. Within this grouping, the focus on the fund is on companies showing a measurable impact on social arenas such as education. The funds also serve start-ups with an environmental impact.

Salesforce ventures drive to promote values of sustainability and social responsibility is expected to see it investing in companies that provide solutions to the challenges affecting the world. Acknowledging the unprecedented nature of the challenges impacting the world including COVID-19, climate change, and racial injustice, Salesforce Ventures said it will continue to invest in companies that present solutions to these problems.

To date, Salesforce Ventures has invested in startups using tech to improve the areas such as education, equity, and inclusion, climate solutions as well as providing tech for non-profit organizations around the world.

Some of the notable investments in which salesforce was involved in Africa include Andela’s 40 million series C funding in 2017 as well as an investment in Angaza and Flutterwave.

Also read: South African Health-Tech Udok seals US$613k in Venture Capital Funding

The Funds Director Claudine Emeott expressed hope that by the end of the coming year the fund would have made a meaningful impact.

“I hope that we have made numerous investments in companies that are addressing today’s concurrent crises, and I hope that we can point to their measurable impact on those crises. I hope that we can point to exciting new integrations between our portfolio companies and Salesforce to tackle these challenges together.”

Claudine Emeott, Director of Impact Investing, Salesforce Venture

The news comes at a time when a myriad of challenges is facing the African continent. Many of its youthful population have risen in an attempt to meet those challenges. As a result, many tech startups have been born to proffer solutions to the social and economic challenges. Lack of access to funding is among the chief reasons for the premature death of many innovative potentially disruptive ideas. Funding of this nature comes as a welcome vehicle for development in Africa.

Original article on The Exchange

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