(Ecofin Agency) - Nigerian startup TradeDepot, which offers product distribution solutions for retailers and consumers, received additional financing of $10 million to expand its activity in and outside Nigeria. Participants in this investment cycle led by the venture capital firm Partech are the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative, and MSA Capital.
Since 2016, when it launched operations, the Nigerian company has established a network of more than 40,000 small-scale retailers in the country. In collaboration with international distributors and manufacturers, including Nestlé, Unilever, GB Foods, and Danon, TradeDepot makes household products cheaper and more accessible to consumers.
“We are excited to strengthen our team and welcome on board some incredible strategic investors and partners, as we double down on our mission to digitize and simplify retail distribution for the continent. Africa’s offline retail market is estimated at $1 trillion, and this new investment allows us to capture an even greater segment of that market,” said Onyekachi Izukanne CEO and co-founder of TradeDepot.
“TradeDepot is a rising star in the African internet landscape, helping digitize a substantial underserved informal retail segment, which is the pillar of economic growth in Africa. The founders’ vision to build a digital platform that improves the unit economics of serving the mass market is one we feel privileged to support,” said Wale Ayeni (pictured), the head of Africa Venture Capital investment at the IFC.
The support earned investors privileged shares in the capital of the Nigerian firm, without the right of vote. However, it is not clear whether these shares are convertible into common equity. In a country with a population of 200 million, implementing a distribution solution that allows all players to win can quickly become a profitable business.