Gebeya, a SaaS-enabled, Pan-African marketplace has announced a pre-series A equity investment from Inclusion Japan (ICJ) to drive growth and innovation for its continuous expansion.
The undisclosed strategic investment will be used to expand Gebeya from a single two-sided tech talent marketplace to a provisioner of marketplaces under a Marketplace-As-A-Service model.
The startup will share its expertise in supplying vetted gig workers to hundreds of entrepreneurs across Africa, who seek to launch their own marketplaces. They will benefit from the ability to quickly get their businesses online, creating gig economy jobs per marketplace, across the continent.
Formed six years ago, Gebeya has been dedicated to building Africa’s tech talent ecosystem through a combination of upskilling and job-creation opportunities for hundreds of working tech professionals while also supporting entrepreneurs looking to launch their own innovations.
“ICJ has so far invested in two African-based startups, both in Ethiopia. Dodai, an e-mobility technology startup, is run by my fellow CEO Yuma whose vision and commitment to Africa have made ICJ consider the second investment into Gebeya. ICJ investment is quite strategic in building a strong bridge between Japan and Ethiopia regarding investment, knowledge transfer, and business development.” said Amadou Daffe, Gebeya’s CEO & Co-founder.
To date, ICJ has invested in 16 startups under their ICJ No. 2 Fund. The undisclosed investment in Gebeya is the fund’s first in Africa’s talent marketplace space. Start-ups in Africa raised nearly $5 billion last year, breaking the 2021 record of $4.6 billion, in the face of a global funding downturn, according to Africa: The Big Deal.
“We are delighted to be investing in Gebeya,” said Yasuhiro Yoshizawa, Director, and Co-Founder at ICJ. “As a fund manager with a $100 million investment budget that will focus on the Africa region, I consider myself very fortunate to have been able to invest in Gebeya, which has the greatest potential in Sub-Saharan Africa.”
Gebeya has already raised a total of $4M in seed funding from Partech Ventures, Orange Ventures, and Consonance since 2020.
ICJ’s vision is for a high-touch, collaborative co-creation of the future, where individuals and society work in harmony to address pressing problems. Their other portfolio companies include startups in green energy, finance, food, and transportation, including ispace Inc., a Japanese startup that launched a commercial spacecraft to the moon last December, setting a record. Zeroboard, another ICJ portfolio company, is dedicated to decarbonization.