Orange Ventures and Digital Africa have signed a landmark partnership agreement to invest in startups from the Orange Digital Centers (ODC) network across Africa and the Middle East. The agreement, signed at Vivatech by Fayçal Adlouni, Managing Partner of Orange Ventures, and Grégoire de Padirac, CEO of Digital Africa, aims to strengthen and accelerate support for African startups. Asma Ennaifer, Executive Director of CSR, Communications, and the Orange Digital Center program for Orange Africa and the Middle East, praised this initiative, which builds on a strategic partnership established in June 2023 to facilitate financing and support for ODC network startups.

Commitment to Accelerate Startup Growth

The partnership underscores Orange Ventures and Digital Africa’s commitment to further invest in startups accelerated by the ODC network. Through the Fuzé scheme, funds committed by one party can be doubled through joint appraisal of applications and the possibility of joint financing. The Orange Digital Center ecosystem, deployed in 17 countries in Africa and the Middle East and 8 countries in Europe, offers a range of free programs, from digital training for young people to startup incubation and acceleration, providing comprehensive support throughout the startup lifecycle.

Initial Success Stories

In the first year of the partnership, five startups in the ODC network received funding of up to €50,000 each through Digital Africa’s Fuzé program. These startups include Clinihome (Healthtech), Koree (Fintech), and Colorfol (cultural and creative industries) in Cameroon, and Tolbi (Agritech) and Proboutik (Fintech) in Senegal. The funding will enable these startups to significantly expand their activities.

Enhancing Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Orange Ventures, the venture capital investment arm of the Orange Group, plays a crucial role in this initiative, reflecting a strong desire to accelerate the growth of startups. At the signing ceremony, representatives from Orange, OMEA, and Digital Africa expressed their enthusiasm and commitment to the success of this new initiative. Fayçal Adlouni, CEO of Orange Ventures, emphasized the group's commitment to nurturing future technology leaders in Africa and the Middle East. “This arrangement, involving Orange Middle East and Africa, Orange Ventures, and Digital Africa, will collectively enable us to concentrate our resources to create an environment conducive to the success of startups in Africa and the Middle East,” said Adlouni.

Empowering Innovation through Collaboration

Asma Ennaifer highlighted the role of Orange Digital Centers as catalysts for innovation, where ideas transform into reality. By collaborating with Orange Ventures and Digital Africa, the initiative aims to provide African startups with the resources needed to thrive in the rapidly expanding digital world. “By joining forces with Orange Ventures and Digital Africa, we’re giving African startups the means to thrive and make their mark in a rapidly expanding digital world,” Ennaifer noted.

Grégoire de Padirac, CEO of Digital Africa, expressed his excitement about the partnership with Orange, emphasizing their shared commitment to supporting African entrepreneurs from the earliest stages. By providing a comprehensive range of financing and support services, the partnership aims to create a robust ecosystem for startups in the region. “I am delighted by this partnership with Orange, with whom we share the same commitment to supporting African entrepreneurs from the earliest stages of maturity by providing them with a comprehensive range of financing and support services,” said de Padirac.