from MARIA MACHARIA in Nairobi, Kenya
NAIROBI – SAFARICOM is to establish two new subsidiaries, one dedicated to investing in seed-stage and another on growth-stage start-ups.
Shareholders have approved the move at the 15th Annual General Meeting (AGM), which represent a momentous step towards supporting tech entrepreneurs, fostering innovation and fortifying Safaricom’s role as a key enabler of the Kenyan tech community.
The incorporation of a company limited by guarantee to invest in seed stage startups, builds on the Spark Fund—an investment entity by Safaricom governed by a Board of Trustees—designed to empower, and nurture seed-stage start-ups across Kenya.
This new entity is expected to streamline administrative processes and enhance governance.
The Spark Fund portfolio companies include Shupavu 291 by Eneza education, which focuses on mobile-web learning for primary and secondary school students; iProcure, which provides an agricultural supply chain platform in rural Africa; Sendy, a tech company that builds fulfilment infrastructure for e-commerce and consumer brands.
Africa’s first Integrated Customer Experience company, Ajua and Soko Fresh who provide access to cold chain infrastructure that extends the shelf life of produce for Digifarm farmers.
On the other hand, the new private limited liability company will be mandated to; invest in mature, strategically aligned entities that will help accelerate Safaricom’s mission towards becoming a tech company by 2025. This entity will also act as the main investment vehicle for all strategic investments undertaken by Safaricom.
Peter Ndegwa, Safaricom CEO, said: “We are committed to empowering the tech ecosystem in Kenya and beyond, and this strategic move will enable us to broaden our investments, embracing both seed-stage and growth-stage start-ups. Incorporating these subsidiaries is pivotal to realising Safaricom’s purpose to become a purpose-led technology company.”
Adil Khawaja, Chairman of the Board, thanked shareholders for their support in establishing the new subsidiaries.
“By investing in tech entrepreneurs and initiatives that align with our strategic mission, we aim to continue to transform lives by connecting people, opportunities, and information while driving innovation, creating value, and leaving a lasting impact on society,” said Khawaja.
At the AGM, shareholders also approved a final dividend of KSh0,62 (US$0,004)per ordinary share with the dividend payout amounting to KSh24,84 billion.
– CAJ News