Every startup is a business. whether they have a special platform, tool or website where they offer 24/7 services to their users. Even when they provide a special kind of convenience, speed or any other juicy feature they all promise us in the advertisement, the fact remains that they are still a business.
In obvious terms, the only thing that makes them different from the local trader is the special tool they provide alongside the business itself, this definitely switches things up. While local businesses tend to stay local, startups are open to more opportunities, such as expansion, multiple product services, and a huge customer base. Yet a startup most definitely needs the same kind of support a local business needs and even more to stay relevant.
No business can scale without financial support. no matter how exciting and mindblowing the idea can be without finances it remains a draft in the dusty drawer. This is why when a startup raises funding the whole newsroom becomes a madhouse, why? because such a business is given an opportunity to move from a draft to a prototype and eventually to a real product. This is where Venture Capitalists (VC) save the day like the “Teenage Mutant Superheroes” (superhero characters).
VCs are private ventures that make financial investments in the equity of a potential business or startup as the case may be. These investors have the capability to scale a business if funds are well expended and managed.
Usually, VCs create a “backbone” kind of support for small businesses, either providing them with capital or assisting their expansion plan. Fund investment is exchanged for equities for VCs, as the firm will also earn a percentage of the profit made on products or services. VCs could also experience failure if the proposed idea fails, founders and VCs will have to share the loss.
Venture Capitalists can invest in any business of their choice, either locally or internationally. Without concentrating on a particular continent or ecosystem, the trend is for VCs to go internationally. This does not reduce the significance of indigenous VCs, in fact, they are more important to a startup than international VCs.
While international VCs will most likely invest in an up-and-running business, Indigenous VCs are more approachable to startups that have not kicked off yet. If a local business can identify a problem, provide a solution, highlight profitmaking avenues through the solution and demonstrate a willingness to incorporate the VCs into its activities, then there is high investment potential for such business via indigenous VCs.
Although most investments that take place in Africa are through international VCs, this does not take away the fact that there are still notable indigenous VCs within the continent. Usually, each country has various indigenous VCs.
There is a handful of indigenous VCs across Africa. Just as Nigeria has Greentree Investment Company, Kenya with TLcom Capital, Kalon Venture Partners for South Africa, and Tunisia also has 216 Capital.
Tunisia is home to an ample amount of startups in North Africa. A location for budding tech talents and a few matured startups. it is only right for it to house 216 Capital.
216 Capital is a Tunisian Venture Capitalist firm. The firm was founded by a team of investors and entrepreneurs in 2021. Frankly, 216 is growing to become one of the major VCs in Tunisia as it targets early-stage tech-enabled or tech-focused startups within the country.
As a country, Tunisia is becoming “that” location for tech startups within Africa. It has a population of about 11 million people, more than 30% of the population is enhanced with western education and a large amount of the nation’s youth are innovative, procuring live solutions to problems within their communities. Alongside other unmentioned features, Tunisia is viewed as a location of untapped possibilities for startups. This, therefore, endangers the growth of startups and VC firms inclusive, bringing about a few of 216 Capital activities within the country.
Since its inception, 216 Capital has actively been in the works to impact startups within the Northern African country. Although it recently clocked a year into the ecosystem, the venture has been able to invest in a few startups. 216 led the round that secured Beekeeper’s seed funding of $640, 000.
In mid-2022, the VC firm was able to close a $9.6 million investment deal to support its local investment project. The funding was made available by an undisclosed firm. The VC firm still targets a bigger size deal to enable its projected investment into startups within the nation.
Recently while the firm addressed pressmen, its Partner Dhekra Khelifi, said “We are also conscious of the purpose we have set for ourselves: to assist innovative firms in the early stages of their development and to be more than just a financing vehicle, but a partner in their success. We are confident, and we have already begun our entry investment phase with two commitments in two businesses in order to send a strong and comforting signal to Tunisian founders and, more importantly, to reposition Tunisia on the radar of international players.”
Often projects start off with so much enthusiasm but slowly time reveals the real potential of the initiative. Hopefully, when 216 Capital’s potential is fully revealed, it can still push its vision.