Wamda Capital cofunds Kenyan B2B food supply platform

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Twiga Foods, the Kenyan business-to-business food supply platform announced today that it has successfully raised a Series A funding round including $6.3mil in equity and $4m in debt instruments.

The round was led by Wamda Capital and includes Omidyar Network, DOB Equity, Uqalo, 1776, Blue Haven Initiative, Alpha Mundi, and AHL.

The investment will enable Twiga to increase the number of vendors it is able to serve each day in Nairobi, diversify its product portfolio, and introduce advanced supplier services.

Established in 2014, Twiga is improving Kenya’s agricultural market, helping address key economic issues including soaring food prices, safety, and sustainable markets.

Twiga Team: (from left to right) Enda Kwinga - HR, Grant Brooke - CEO, Kikonde Mwatela - COO, Caine Wanjau - CTO,
Mahia-John Mahiaini - CFO (Image via Twiga).

"Twiga is an outcome of the Nairobi startup ecosystem, the years of investments that have gone into developing talent, supporting hubs, and attracting capital to the market,” said Grant Brooke, cofounder of Twiga Foods.

The company uses technology to consolidate the fragmented purchasing power of urban retailers. It saves them a trip to the market by delivering to their doorstep better quality and better priced stock. Twiga then translates this aggregated purchasing power to farmers across the country allowing them to access stable markets at better prices, while minimizing post-harvest losses through efficient logistics.

Today, Twiga is the largest distributor of several basic food staples in Kenya, having sold over 55 million bananas alone and delivering over 4,000 orders a week.

The Series A funding round also signals increased momentum for Nairobi’s growing tech industry.

Fadi Ghandour, chairman of Wamda Capital, who will be joining the Twiga Board of Directors said: "Twiga represents our first investment in East Africa, a new geography for us in which we plan on being increasingly more active. We are particularly excited in beginning our investment program in East Africa by  supporting this remarkable set of entrepreneurs building a truly disruptive business. Drawing on our experience in the logistics and supply chain space, we believe Twiga has developed a unique solution to address the inherent inefficiencies in the delivery of fresh produce in East Africa with significant positive impact for both producers and consumers"

“We are pleased to support Twiga and its mission of helping Kenya create a more sustainable, scalable farm produce ecosystem,” said Ory Okolloh, director of investments at Omidyar Network.

Additional to the Series A round closing, Twiga closed some $2 million in grant funding from USAID, GSMA, and others to support bolt-on farmer services, financial inclusion, and first of their kind domestic food safety initiatives.

"The addition of new partners into Twiga, and continued support of our current stakeholders, is a huge affirmation that there's a better way to build marketplaces for Kenya and the rest of urban Africa,” said Peter Njonjo, cofounder of Twiga Foods “We can get consumers and suppliers a better deal, and this support will go a long way in achieving those goals."

Feature image via Twiga website.

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