How can founders make the tough decisions that come with building in a new market? How do they balance these decisions with the challenges that usually accompany construction? How do they evolve sustainably and how should they look to the future?
This morning at 11am (WAT), Join Imisi3D founder Judith Okonkwo on #BuildingFromGroundUp.
Imisi3D is a Lagos-based creative lab that focuses on building the ecosystem of extended reality (AR/VR/MR) technologies, connecting XR communities across Africa, and providing opportunities for learning and access to XR resources for creators and enthusiasts.
The company’s work is one of the few that paved the way for XR in Nigeria. How did Judith get to where she is today? What are his biggest lessons and tips for founders on a similar path?
If you’re curious, sign up now to find out.
The #BuildingFromGroundUp series is powered by the UK-Nigeria Tech Hub with TechCabal as implementing partner.
QUICK SHOT 🔥 WITH DANIEL ADEYEMI
Daniel is a Senior Writer at TechCabal. He mainly writes about Big Tech companies and high growth companies in Africa. He shares the ideas of investors in the African ecosystem through his bi-monthly Ask an Investor column. He previously wrote TC Daily.
Daniel is curious about how technology impacts the lives of Africans. Prior to joining TechCabal, he worked in the technology and consulting industry as an accountant.
Explain your job to a five year old
I update people on what’s happening around them (in the African tech space, to be precise), sometimes presenting them with information that helps them make better decisions.
What do you wish you had known earlier in your career/life?
No matter what you learn in school, life will always present new scenarios that were never in the curriculum. You will understand it especially along the way.
What is your 2022 prediction for tech in Africa?
After reading Future Babble, I stopped paying much attention to predictions. But since you asked the question, I’m sure neobanks won’t stop popping up around every corner and venture capital funding will increase this year.
What accomplishment (singular) are you most proud of?
My 588-day Duolingo sequence for learning German. It made me realize that there are new areas in consistency. Plus, I’m proud to explore a different career path (from accounting to journalism) and excel at it. This often makes me wonder what else I can do.
What is one thing you love to do that you suck at? And what is one thing that you really dislike doing and are good at.
Design, drawing, painting. Sometimes I like to express myself through visual art, but I suck at it. Maybe it’s because I haven’t practiced enough, but so far I suck.
Cooking. By my standards, I’m awesome, 😎 but if it wasn’t a necessary survival skill, I wouldn’t care.
What should new founders know about (the) press?
Often the person who tells the most compelling story wins, not necessarily the one with the best idea or the correct answer. Morgan Housel explains better here.
Just because a startup exists and the founder thinks what they’re building is special isn’t enough of a reason for it to be covered in the press. David Adeleke explains better here.
Something for the boys?
MDR. I too need help. 😉
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INTERPOL’S MEGA BEC BUST
On Wednesday, Interpol announced that it had taken down one of Nigeria’s biggest cybercrime gangs, SilverTerrier (not to be confused with the beloved children’s cartoon, Silver Hawks.)
SilverTerrier operates one of the costliest scams in the world, Business Email Compromise or BEC. Basically, criminals using BEC hack corporate email accounts or create spoofs that mimic corporate accounts in order to defraud people who believe they are communicating with legitimate companies.
BEC scams are a type of phishing scam called spear phishing because they have specific targets and require more planning. Phishing scams are also more financially damaging than other attacks like ransomware attacks, costing US businesses around $15 million a year. They are also more prevalent, with this study showing that businesses are 7 times more prone to phishing than malware.
So, how important is the SilverTerrier gang?
Eleven suspects were arrested by Interpol and with them were 800,000 usernames and passwords, targeting more than 50,000 people.
This time, Interpol also took aim at the big guns. Instead of targeting and monitoring identifiable mules on social media – like what was done with Hushpuppi in 2020 – Interpol focused on technical cartooning of operations. Working with Palo Alto Networks, the agency was able to identify those who had the skills and expertise to “build and deploy the malware and domain infrastructure used in these schemes.”
Zoom out: Interpol plans to release more information later, but little is known about the identities of the suspects. Looks like these guys would have been better off building a platform that would help people keep their passwords.
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TC INSIGHTS: MONITORING FUNDING
This week, Kenyan B2C e-commerce platform Copia Global raised $50 million in a Series C funding round to fuel its expansion efforts.
The round was led by Goodwell Investments and also includes former investors Lightrock, German development finance institution DEG and Perivoli Innovations, as well as new investors Zebu Investment Partners, the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and Koa Labs .
Here are the other offers of the week:
South African mobile games startup Carry1st has received a $20 million Series A expansion from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Avenir and Google to help it expand across Africa.
Ghanaian fintech startup Float, has closed a $17m debt and equity financing round. The round was led by Tinder co-founder Justin Mateen and Tiger Global’s JAM Fund, with debt funding provided by Cauris. Kinfolk, Soma Capital, Ingressive Capital and Magic Fund also participated in the round, along with a few notable angels.
Egyptian educational technology startup Orcas has secured $2.1 million in a pre-Series A funding round co-led by NFX Ventures and CIRA’s Access Bridge Ventures. It also saw participation from Algebra Ventures, Launch Africa Ventures, Cairo Angels Syndicate Fund and Seedstars International.
Nigerian restaurant management startup Orda has raised $1.1m in pre-seed funding to accelerate its growth and expand across the continent. The round was led by Lofty Inc Capital Management, with participation from Techstars – Boulder, Magic Fund, Hustle Fund, Norrsken Foundation, Microtraction, DFS Labs, Oxford Seed Fund, Enza Capital and Agrolay Advisors, as well as Ire Aderinokun, Jesse Ovia , Ademola Adesina and other angel investors.
Nigerian developer tooling startup Frain Technologies has raised $473,000 in a pre-seed funding round led by Rally Cap Ventures. Musha Ventures, Future Africa, Eric Idiah, Tomiwa Lasebikan, Prosper Otemuyiwa, Odunayo Eweniyi, Timi Ajiboye, Opeyemi Awoyemi and several other angels also participated.
Egyptian e-commerce platform 3attar has secured an undisclosed amount of seed investment from AUC Angels, UI Investment and individual angel investors. continue its growth trajectory and expand into other markets.
Nigerian fintech startup Pivo has received undisclosed funding from venture capital firm Microtraction.
It’s all for this week !
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