Connecting Africa's Early Stage Investors
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African Startups: Unicorns, Gazelles and Corporate Breakfasts

Over the past few years, the race has been on to find the first African Unicorn - an African startup valued at $1bn or more in its first 5 years. I think we can all agree, the idea of an African Unicorn is not a bad one, but is it realistic, and is it what Africa really needs?

The concept of a 'Unicorn' originated in the US, and as such, has assumed a global stamp of acceptance. In his recent blog post "African Startups. Of Unicorns, Gazelles and Corporate Breakfasts" however, Collins Onuegbu of the Lagos Angels Network argues that "Unicorns are mythical creatures. In Africa, we have the Gazelle - a sleek creature, stable and built for the tough turf of Africa." Something we can all relate with.

Keet van Zyl, Co-Founder of Knife Capital, also argues in his blog post 'Save the African Startup Gazelle and Forget the Lesser-Spotted Unicorn' that “Entrepreneurship is hard in Africa”; and that “one of the key differentiators of many African startups is that they set out to build sustainable companies that solve real problems - because they have to”.

So, the conversation rages on. Should we follow the rest of the world in looking for our own Unicorns, or instead start better defining our Gazelles and creating our own lexicon to manage our own African journey?

Find out what Collins and Keet conclude in their respective blog posts here and here.
Key Takeaways:|The Nairobi Masterclass by VBAN
Viktoria Business Angels Network launched their 2018 Masterclass series at Nairobi Innovation Week last week. Focusing on 'Early Stage Investing Strategy', the Masterclass was taught by Stephen Gugu; Aun Ali Rahman - Head of InfoDev at the World Bank Group's Access to Finance program; and Kanini Mutooni of East Africa Trade and Investment Hub. 35 Angel Investors attended. (Click Here For More)
South African Startups Call for More Angels
The Jozi Angels recently hosted a breakfast for 20 Angels where they launched their plans for 2018. Founder, Abu Cassim, announced initiatives to work with corporates and other groups to grow the network to 100 angels by the end of the year.
To learn more about how Abu Cassim, founder of the Jozi Angels, sees the role of Angel Investors in the African economy click here.
Understanding the State of the African Economy
Africa collects $500 billion in tax revenue annually, $50 billion in foreign aid, $60 billion in remittances and another $60 billion in FDI inflows. The AfDB economic outlook is out and makes for interesting reading. (Click Here to Read More)

Angels Spreading their Wings Across Nigeria
ABAN’s Tomi Davies and David van Dijk traveled to Lagos and Abuja to engage with local investor communities and, together with partners VC4Africa, the Lagos Angels Network, V8 (in Lagos) and Ventures Platform (Abuja), facilitated a series of investor masterclasses. Next up: Port Hartcourt! (Click Here for More Details)

Botswana Angels Helping to Shape the Ecosystem
Local businessman, Mooketsi Tekere of Ngwana Enterprises, operating in Francistown intends to form the first ever ‘Angel’ Investment bank in Botswana in collaboration with other entrepreneurs and the World Bank. (Read More Here)

Pitch to the Lagos Angels Network
The Lagos StartUp DealDay is a quarterly Angel Investment round run by the Lagos Angel Network. This events brings together LAN members, other Angel Investors and Lagos start-up ecosystem players in a process where the most worthy startup ventures pitch for funding. Applications are now open for the first DealDay of 2018. For more information and qualification criteria Click Here)
Angels Visiting Monsier-Le-President
The leading ladies from WIC, the Women’s Investment Club from Senegal, visited Monsier Le President Macky Sall at the Palace of the Republic in Dakar last week. The visit was in celebration of International women’s day. Click here to read more.
Join the ABAN Team at Leading Industry Events
Silicon Valley & Africa
Silicon Valley & Africa
In the hyper-competitive Silicon Valley, over 70% of startup founders come from outside of the United States; yet, only a fraction of them come from Africa. Exploring the growth and challenges. 21 March.
| Register Now | *Sold Out
Afrikonnect Summit
Afrikonnect Summit | 22-23 March 2018
Enabling collaboration between angels, seed funds and VCs focused on African startups and creating co-investment opportunities between North and Sub Saharan African investors.
| Visit the Website|| Register Now |
Tech in Ghana Conference, London
Tech in Ghana Conference | 26-27 March
The third Tech in Ghana Conference returns to London showcasing Ghana’s leading tech companies and entrepreneurs; providing a platform for knowledge sharing and networking for the tech community.
| Visit the Website|Register Now |
GEC 2018
GBAN Annual Meeting at the GEC
Every year, the GEC gathers thousands of key early-stage stakeholders from over 170 countries to identify new ways of helping founders start and scale new ventures around the world. 16-18 April. 
| Visit the Website|
Angel Capital Association
The 2018 ACA Summit | 18-20 April
The ACA Summit is a not-to-be-missed event for Angel Investors, organised by the Angel Capital Association, with gold standard content and top networking opportunities for the 700 people who are there. 
| Visit the Website|Register Now |
AVCA Conference 
15th Annual AVCA Conference
The Annual AVCA Conference is a flagship event for the private equity and venture capital industry in Africa providing an important platform to discuss the most pertinent opportunities and issues. 22-26 April. 
| Visit the Website|
Africa Tech Summit London 
Africa Tech Summit London| 16 May
Africa Tech Summit London provides unrivalled insight, networking and business opportunities for African and international tech leaders and investors who want to drive growth in Africa.
| Visit the Website||
AIS 2018 
Africa Innovation Summit 2018 | 6-8 June
The AIS is a platform for multi-stakeholder dialogue. The Summit brings together participants from all over the world, with significantly subtantial share coming from Africa.
| Visit the Website||
AFROBYTES | 7-8 June
Afrobytes brings together every variety of tech enthusiasts and media to explore business opportunities between the African tech ecosystem and players in the global tech world.
| Visit the Website||
MEST Africa Summit
MEST Africa Summit | 18-20 June
2018 is the year of the African Scaleup. MEST is convening the brightest minds in Africa for its third annual summit which will culminate with the final round of the MEST Scale-up Challenge.
| Visit the Website||

We are excited to witness the continued growth of the ecosystem and look forward to seeing you at one of the many events.

On behalf of the ABAN team,
David van Dijk
ABAN, Director General

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