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TechNigeria: A weekly digest of what went down in Nigeria’s tech space

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9jacodekids, Zenda, Afriex, Argent, Twig, Venture Platform, Swvl, Glorang, Joi Gifts, OnePost 365. These are some of the names that made the headlines this week.

A Nigerian Fintech startup, Afriex, has raised a $10 million Series A round led by Sequoia Capital China and Dragonfly Capital.

Also, Dubai, during the week, launched a Dh370 million ($100.7 million) VC debt fund to support startups looking to expand globally.

Let’s get into details.

One of the stories we tracked is the 9jacodekids’ raiser. How much, and what for?

During the week, tech correspondent Hamsat Kayode reported that Nigeria-based edtech startup, 9jacodekids, raised a $350K seed funding round to expand its team and operations across Nigeria.

The founder and CEO, Ugochukwu Nkwocha, on Monday, was said to confirm the development in a post on the startup’s website.

Ripples Nigeria gathered that the startup had featured in Ultima’s second season of Lion’s Den, a business reality show that gives new startup owners the opportunity to pitch their business to 5 successful Nigerian investors.

Another story that court our attention is that of Zenda, the UAE startup that raised $9.4M.

Ripples Nigeria revealed that UAE-based startup, Zenda, closed $9.4M seed funding to streamline school fee payment and management.

The cofounder, Raman Thiagarajan, made the announcement on Monday in a statement seen by Ripples Nigeria.

According to the statement, investors who participated in the round include STV, COTU Ventures, Global Founders Capital, and VentureSouq.

Despite facing hostility in Nigeria, cryptocurrency continues to gain attention from other spheres. What’s the news?

A United Kingdom-based Web3 and decentralised finance startup, Argent, raised $40 million (£32 million) to scale up its venture.

The co-founder and chief executive officer of the startup, Itamar Lesuisse, disclosed this in a statement on Friday.

The round which is expected to help the startup optimise its all-in-one DeFi app, was led by Fabric Ventures and Metaplanet.

The big fish, they say, will continue to swallow the smaller fishes. We saw this playout in the UK this week.

Coming as part of efforts to boost circular economy offering, two-year old fintech startup Twig has acquired mobile phone recommerce firm, Mobi Market.

The founder and CEO of Twig, Geri Cupi, on Friday, confirmed the development in a statement, noting that the deal was valued at $10m (£8m).

The acquisition followed the news of Twig’s recent raiser, a $35 million Series A round led by U.K.-based fintech specialist, Fasanara Capital, with additional backing from a number of undisclosed strategic investors.

We saw a good example from Dubai in the area of investment and job creation during the week after it launched an empowerment fund for growth and talent development.

Dubai launched a Dh370 million ($100.7 million) VC debt fund, as it looks to support startups looking to expand globally.

The Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council The Chairman, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, confirmed the development in a statement on Friday.

According to the council, the venture debt fund will be managed and supervised by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

Back home, a VC firm increased the size of its portfolio. Continue reading to learn more.

Also during the week, an Abuja-based VC, Ventures Platform, has announced adding four new portfolio companies to its increasing chest.

The VC disclosed this in a statement published on its official website and seen by Ripples Nigeria on Friday.

The new startups, according to the VC, were selected for developing innovative solutions to solve critical societal problems.

Read also: Nigeria’s edtech startup, 9jacodekids, raises $350K seed funding. Two other stories and a trivia

Corporate acquisitions seem to be a common characteristics during the week.

A Dubai-based company Ride-sharing group, Swvl, acquired a UK start-up, Zeelo in a $100M deal.

Mostafa Kandil, Swvl Founder and CEO, confirmed this in a statement on Friday made available to local media.

The acquisition is the second acquisition in a roll for the Dubai company.

On investment funding raised by Nigerian startups, OnePort 365 and Afrie raised a total of $15M.

OnePort 365 is a Nigeria-based digital freight forwarding startup, while Afrie is a Nigerian Fintech startup.

OnePort 365 raised a $5M seed funding. One the other hand, Afriex raised a $10 million Series A round led by Sequoia Capital China and Dragonfly Capital.

Finally, we published an exclusive on Nigerian Digital Bank, Stellas.

We casted a spotlight on the Ghost Mode feature that allows users make anonymous transactions

We noted that the bank is fully licensed by the CBN, with deposits insured by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC.

Available on android and iOS, anyone seeking class can download and commence use.

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