P1 Ventures, a pan-African Seed Venture Capital (VC) fund, has successfully completed the second close of its $35 million fund, signaling a significant milestone in its mission to support Africa’s burgeoning tech ecosystem. The fund aims to fuel the expansion of its team and operations to key African hubs, including Dakar, Senegal, and Nairobi, Kenya.

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With a focus on sectors such as AI-powered Software as a Service (SaaS), P1 Ventures sees Africa as having a distinct economic advantage. The investment firm plans to deploy the funds to accelerate its work in these sectors, driving innovation and fostering growth opportunities for African entrepreneurs.

A major highlight of this funding round is the participation of the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) as P1 Ventures’ first public institutional investor. This partnership will provide crucial support to early-stage tech startups, helping them secure growth capital to scale operations and attract follow-on funding.

P1 Ventures has been steadily building its capabilities, having hired its first in-house data scientist last year to spearhead AI-powered deal sourcing efforts across the continent. This initiative marks a pioneering move for African investors, enabling P1 Ventures to identify promising investment opportunities and top talent.

Founded in 2020 by General Partners Mikael Hajjar and Hisham Halbouny, P1 Ventures is committed to bridging the capital gap that limits the growth of African startups. The firm seeks to back founders leveraging emerging technologies like generative AI to disrupt traditional industries, ranging from healthcare and banking to retail and agriculture.

Contrary to the prevailing trend, which sees a disproportionate amount of foreign investment concentrated in a few African countries, P1 Ventures boasts a diverse portfolio of African companies across the continent. Some notable startups in its portfolio include Algeria’s mobility and logistics platform, Yassir; Egypt’s savings app, Money Fellows; Nigeria-based employee healthcare platform, Reliance Health; and Francophone-focused ecommerce and fintech app, Chari.

P1 Ventures’ strategic approach has proven successful, with its portfolio companies experiencing significant revenue growth year on year. The firm’s commitment to supporting seasoned entrepreneurs and market-proven business models has enabled its portfolio to attract substantial follow-on capital, driving further expansion and innovation in Africa’s tech landscape.

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