Mubadala and Bpifrance to co-invest in Africa's largest technology VC fund

Partech Africa II has reached a hard cap of $304m

The commitment is the first investment made through Mubadala and Bpifrance's €350 million Africa co-investment partnership. Victor Besa / The National
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Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Company and France's national investment bank Bpifrance will jointly invest in global technology investment company Partech's latest Africa-focused venture capital fund – Partech Africa II, as it looks to build its portfolio of assets globally.

The Partech Africa II fund, which has reached a hard cap of €280 million ($304.4 million), is the largest venture capital fund dedicated to tech start-ups in Africa, the entities said in a statement on Wednesday.

The commitment by Mubadala and Bpifrance is the first investment made through their €350 million Africa co-investment partnership that was announced in June 2021.

“Africa is one of the world’s fastest growing markets for venture capital,” Andres Rodenas de la Vega, head of Mubadala’s France Investment Programme, said.

“We have developed a strong working relationship with Bpifrance through our France Investment Programme and we look forward to continuing our close collaboration on a number of investments going forward.”

The new fund aims to provide $1 million to $15 million initial tickets from Seed to Series C rounds.

As part of the Africa co-investment partnership, Mubadala and Bpifrance aim to deploy capital through fund and direct investments, with a focus on high-growth African start-ups, small and medium enterprises and mid-market companies.

Bpifrance is also an investor in Partech’s first Africa fund, which achieved a final close of €125 million in January 2019.

Launched in 2018, Partech Africa I comprises a portfolio that operates in 27 countries on the continent, across sectors such as FinTech, HealthTech, logistics and EdTech. The portfolio attracted more than 10 per cent of the VC investments in Africa in 2021 and 2022.

“We are pleased and proud not only to renew our support to Partech for this second pan-African fund that will address the continent's growing technological challenges, but [also] to do so alongside, Mubadala, another historical partner,” said Isabelle Bebear, Bpifrance’s head of European and international affairs.

Mubadala is investing across key locations and new economic sectors, aiming to boost its footprint and build its portfolio of assets globally.

“Any investment venture would be based on the attractiveness of the opportunities that would be identified in the key markets we are focused on and not on geopolitical considerations,” Khaldoon Al Mubarak, group chief executive and managing director of Mubadala, said at the Investopia conference in Abu Dhabi last month.

Mubadala is expecting capital deployments across artificial intelligence and space technology, Mr Al Mubarak said.

In February, Mubadala said it was investing in India’s Manipal Health Enterprises as part of its continued expansion in Asia’s third-largest economy.

In the same month, it also signed a $1 billion partnership with Goldman Sachs to co-invest in private credit opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region.

In December, it teamed up with Abu Dhabi's Aldar Properties and US alternative investment manager Ares Management to jointly invest $1 billion in a new European private property credit platform to tap into opportunities in the key markets of the region.

Updated: March 06, 2024, 1:44 PM