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Investments

Afrimarket

  • LocationWest Africa
  • SectorRemittances
  • Type of investmentEquity investment
  • Project stageTest & Transition

A $2.2 million preferred equity investment in Afrimarket, an innovation which seeks to increase remittance flows to West Africa, especially regional and rural areas, through a cash-to-goods approach and reduced sender costs.

Afrimarket

Investment Overview

4.8%

The percentage of GDP that remittances represent in the 5 West African countries where Afrimarket operates

8%

The percentage of the amount sent that is taken in remittance fees on average


The development problem

Remittances play an important role in domestic resource mobilization, representing up to 5% of GDP in West Africa and acting as a form of insurance against macroeconomic shock. However, several major barriers to the use of remittances exist. These include high fees and trust issues, with average global remittance costs reaching 8% of the amount sent.

The innovation

Afrimarket provides a low-cost cash-to-goods service for sending remittances such as food products, sanitation products and construction materials to West Africa, serving as a compliment to traditional money transfer operators. The innovation increases remittance flows through reduced sender costs using a mobile, no-middleman model, and also increases trust levels by allowing users to send specific products to recipients or to make use of a voucher system.

GIF’s investment

A $2.2 million preferred equity investment (as part of Afrimarket’s Series B equity round)


Why we invested

Unique solution applying an eCommerce approach to a development problem

Remittances are an important source of funds for GIF’s target beneficiaries

Significant traction with key cash-in partners

Strong team with significant logistical and eCommerce experience in Africa

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