Wajenzi is an investment marketplace allowing diaspora to invest in small businesses in their country of origin. Wajenzi wants to be the first diaspora investment marketplace in Africa.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) comprise the backbone of Africa’s economy, accounting for approximately 90% of all companies and providing nearly 80% of the region’s employment.
In the wake of Covid-19, SMEs has been hard hit by the effects of the health measures and the halt of many local business activities. In Africa, entire sectors of the economy are currently shut down and SMEs (which alone account for 60% of formal employment) are facing major cashflow problems.
Financial access is the single biggest hindrance to both the establishment of new African enterprises and the growth of existing ones. It is estimated that the continent’s formal SME sector has an annual financing gap of over US $136 billion, according to the International Finance Corporation.
The diaspora send home around $48 billion per year and only 15% of this amount is invested in companies. The diaspora want to invest in Africa but they lack financial services allowing to do so. They lack also reliable information about investment opportunities in Africa.
Wajenzi is a financial marketplace allowing SMEs in Africa to raise funding from the diaspora in exchange of equity in their business. Wajenzi's mission is to promote financial inclusion by connecting the diaspora to bankable and trustworthy investment opportunities in Africa. This contributes to SDG 8 (Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth) and SDG 17 (Partnership for the Goal). In addition, Wajenzi focuses on promoting women access to finance (SDG 5). Wajenzi focuses on sectors that have an impact on SDGs such Agriculture (SDG2), health (SDG3), education SDG4) and clean energy (SDG7).
Today, there are no financial services targeting the diaspora besides money transfer services. Wajenzi is the first diaspora investment marketplace in the world.
All investments on our platform are guaranteed by the African Guarantee Fund.
According to statista, the alternative finance market totals to $6.9 Billion USD in 2019 and it is projected to grow annually from 2019 to 2023 at a rate of 14.7% to reach $12 Billion USD by 2023 globally. Alternative finance is still in its infancy in Africa. Its potential is estimated by the World Bank at $ 2.5 billion in 2020. When it comes to remittances, the diaspora send $48 billion per year to support their families back home. Only 15% of the remittances are invested in productive investments.
For each equity investment made on our platform, we add a 5% commission for our services. Example: if you wish to invest €100 in a campaign, the final amount we will ask for an investor to pay will be of €105.
In addition, a performance fee will be withheld from the capital gain realised in the case of participation in the capital. In case of a positive exit, Wajenzi will earn 20% on the capital gain exceeding a 5% yearly capitalised return or internal rate of return.
Companies raising money on the platform will raise on average €200.000. Wajenzi plans to support 15 companies in the first year to raise €3.000.000 the first year.
The second year, we aim to support 45 companies to raise € 9.000.000. The third year Wajenzi will support 65 companies raising €13.000.000.
We have already 35 companies and 100 investors registered on our platform. We have also strategic partnership with the Africa Guarantee Fund and PwC. Our solution has been mentioned in Forbes Magazine. We have won 2 awards for best sustainable startups.
Wajenzi’s team is composed by a team with extensive knowledge in investment, compliance and software development. They are both migrants and they are passionate about the problem.
Wajenzi is raising €300.000 to be used in software development, marketing and in compliance.