Kenyan low-cost internet service provider Poa Internet has closed a $28 million round of funding led by Africa50.
Poa Internet has been operating in the country since 2016 targeting users in low-income areas and is very popular in places such as Kibera and Kawangware in Nairobi.
The firm intends to use the new funding to support its future growth plans across Kenya, as well as launch the business into further African markets.
Also participating in the first closing is Novastar Ventures, which is making its third investment into the company and a number of other existing shareholders. Since starting operations in 2016, Poa has continuously improved its operations and market position and currently has over 12,000 home internet customers, as well as tens of thousands of street Wi-Fi customers.
The company said in a statement that this additional funding demonstrates investors’ confidence in Poa’s ongoing strategy and underscores the need for African Internet Service Providers (ISPs) that focus on bridging the digital divide across the continent.
”Poa is all about connecting the unconnected of Africa to create opportunities for growth, learning and economic stimulus through digitisation. We have a young, energetic and committed team, that are working tirelessly to make our vision a reality. Now with Africa50’s investment, we can ramp up our roll-out plans and provide value to even more communities across Kenya.” Andy Halsall, CEO, Poa Internet said.
Raza Hasnani, Managing Director, Head of Infrastructure Investments at Africa50 said they were delighted to partner with Poa Internet on its mission to provide unlimited broadband internet to underserved communities.
”Poa has been instrumental in bridging the needs of last-mile connectivity, and their ultra-low-cost solutions can be used to address the significant connectivity gaps in Kenya and across the continent as a whole. This is particularly important at a time when societies and economic activities are increasingly becoming digitized as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Increasing access to reliable and affordable internet connectivity is strongly aligned with the key pillars of Africa50’s strategy, and we are excited to be part of this high impact journey and to support Poa’s growth in Africa.” he said.