EMURGO launches $100m investment vehicle for early and growth stage startups in Africa

EMURGO has announced the launch of a new Cardano ecosystem investment vehicle to invest in early startups and growth-stage startups.

The official commercial arm of the Cardano blockchain will invest on startups focused on building socially impactful solutions powered by Cardano.

As wholly-owned subsidiaries of parent company EMURGO Ptd. Ltd., this new Cardano investment vehicle will be composed of two separate entities, EMURGO Africa, and EMURGO Ventures, each with a distinct investment thesis.

EMURGO Africa aims to support more than three hundred regional startups through seed funding and incubation, to ultimately have Cardano’s blockchain adopted as the technological platform standard in Africa for socially impactful solutions. EMURGO Ventures will focus on other developed markets to facilitate the building of solutions and services on Cardano with a set capital allocation for seed investments into a variety of Cardano-focused startups and middleware solutions companies, including those building decentralized financial services (DeFi), non-fungible token (NFT) projects, blockchain developer education tools, and other decentralized applications.

The integration of smart contracts into Cardano’s blockchain is now set to foster wide innovation of decentralized services and EMURGO’s new investment vehicle through these two entities will support this initiative. As subsidiary entities of EMURGO – one of the founding members of Cardano – EMURGO Africa and EMURGO Ventures will leverage EMURGO’s deep experience in blockchain solutions deployment and global network of industry partners to provide strategic capital to its portfolio companies, helping to bolster the Cardano ecosystem.

Through its previous partnership with SOSV, EMURGO has made more than ten direct investments into blockchain startups, including API3 – a data service provider for blockchains that has garnered investment from major funds in the blockchain industry. For its initial launch, EMURGO Africa has announced two major partnerships to rapidly expand the Cardano ecosystem in Africa and utilize the large business networks of its partners.

Adanian Labs, a venture building studio operator in Africa, will partner with EMURGO Africa to support impact driven startups expanding the Cardano ecosystem across the continent. Adaverse, a Cardano-focused joint accelerator program in Africa with leading blockchain industry accelerator Everest Ventures, will also partner with EMURGO Africa. For its initial launch, EMURGO Ventures has announced its first seed investment into Milkomeda – a dcSpark sidechain project bridging Cardano and other Layer 1 blockchain protocols that will utilize wrapped ADA (wADA) as an asset.

“We are more focused than ever on accelerating the development of Cardano’s ecosystem with a rich mix of decentralized services catering to a global community that is increasing in overall blockchain awareness. EMURGO is dedicated to meeting this demand by providing the capital and strategic resources necessary for our portfolio companies to scale rapidly and bring new solutions to Cardano.” Ken Kodama, CEO, EMURGO said.

Charles Hoskinson, CEO, IOHK said “EMURGO’s investments will help to shape the future of the Cardano ecosystem, a maturing network with a creative and diverse community, growing smart contract capabilities and partnerships across the globe that provide social and financial services utilizing Cardano’s provably-secure technology.”

According to the 2021 Chainalysis Global Crypto Adoption Index, global cryptocurrency adoption has jumped over 880% and is skyrocketing, led by usage of DeFi platforms in emerging markets. It is noted that residents in these markets have increasingly utilized DeFi platforms as the main gateway to accessing cryptocurrencies due to a lack of access to centralized exchanges and traditional financial services.

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Reginah Wamboi

Reginah is a seasoned Kenyan journalist with a keen interest in business and African startups. Send tips to or

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