November 3, 2023
Norfund has invested in Norrsken22, a new tech fund supporting technology growth and impact across Africa. The fund raised 205 million USD in total, surpassing its target of 200 million USD.
Norrsken22 is focused on entrepreneurs developing fintech, edtech, medtech and market-enabling solutions that will deliver strong returns and have a positive impact. At its inception, the fund was supported by over 30 unicorn founders.
“We are happy to contribute to the Norrsken22 Fund, a seasoned team and an already promising portfolio with more to come,” says Norfund Senior Vice President Bernt Brun.
“Through our investment we contribute to providing capital to startups on the continent, aiding the expansion of tech ecosystems in emerging markets. This facilitates innovation, drives economic growth, and paves the way for the jobs of the future. Additionally, we facilitate technological innovations that enable developing countries to ‘leapfrog’ developed markets by adopting modern business solutions.”
Since the fund’s first close, a number of high-profile institutional investors have joined the investor base: British International Investment (BII), International Finance Corporation (IFC), US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), Standard Bank, Norfund and Hannover Re.
Natalie Kolbe, Managing Partner of Norrsken22, says, “The timing of the fund ideally positions Norrsken22 to support a growing African tech tailwind. The transformative power of technology can leapfrog traditional ways of doing business, and Africa has the opportunity to lead the World with its solutions. We are excited to be partnering with so many promising startups that can have a positive impact across Africa. We are delighted to see an active and growing early-stage investor community growing across the continent, however we still see a gap at growth stage tech funding in the continent. We see a huge opportunity here and are excited to continue investing at this stage.”
Norrsken22 has already made five investments. The portfolio includes South African challenger bank Tyme Bank, African business-to-business digital commerce platform Sabi, Africa’s leading identity verification solution, Smile ID and auto financing platform Autochek.
Norrsken is an impact ecosystem where entrepreneurs can find everything they need to make saving the world their business. They run Norrsken House in Kigali, Rwanda, the largest startup hub in East Africa, and Norrsken House in Stockholm, Sweden, an award-winning co-working space for impact entrepreneurs. They also icubated Norrsken VC – a €130 million impact VC fund and we manage the Norrsken Impact Accelerator for early-stage impact startups. Norrsken is a non-profit, non-partisan and non-political foundation, with a strong belief in effective altruism. It was founded by Niklas Adalberth, co-founder of payment services unicorn Klarna.