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South Africa’s Knife Cap Closes $50 Million Fund

South Africa's Knife Cap Closes $50 Million Fund

Knife Capital (Knife Cap), a South African-based venture capital fund, has announced the closure of its $50 million fund. 

The fund named Knife Capital Three will focus on Series B funding to cater to the needs of already established startups that struggle to expand due to lack of funds.

A wide range of investors contributed towards the $50 million fund including the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Standard Bank, AfricaGrow and a number of local investment companies.

Commenting on the development, Keet van Zyl- the Co-founder of Knife Capital- expressed his delight in the achievement and affirmed his confidence that the new partners will help to actualize follow-on investments in businesses.

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While acknowledging that raising venture capital funds was an arduous journey, van Zyl commended Knife Cap’s team for efforts taken to reach the milestone.

Knife Cap Growing Portfolio

Founded in 2010, Knife Capital has established itself as a prominent venture capital fund in Africa with its investments now extending to other parts of Africa.

Its growth has been a story of one step at a time and making steady progress in its operations. Knife Capital closed its first fund named Knife Capital Fund one in 2010 at $10 million dollars which focused on seed stage funding.

 In 2013, Knife Capital launched a structured entrepreneurship program named Grindstone Accelerator which was aimed at offering training for early stage startups.

The venture capital later took its operations to greater heights in 2016 with its Knife Capital (two) which stood at $25 million and focused on Series A funding.

Speaking to TechCrunch, van Zyl disclosed that Knife Capital expected to close its third fund by 2021 were it not for a few setbacks in its environment. According to him, the macroeconomics and “other factors” forced the venture fund to slow down hence missing the 2021 target.

Throughout its operations, Knife Capital has made significant input in African startups. Among the notable startups to have benefitted from Knife Capital’s investments is Rwanda’s B2B eHealth company, Kasha Global, which recently closed a $21 million Series B funding.

Also in its portfolio is DataProphet , an AI-enabled process optimisation firm from South Africa and Octiv- a complete fitness management software.