The push to empower female entrepreneurs in Kenya and Africa has gained support from the investment management firm Kuramo Capital. The firm has committed Kes22.4 billion ($150 million) over the next decade to the Moremi Fund, a multifaceted initiative aimed at fostering the growth and sustainability of female-led businesses.
This initiative represents a significant step towards closing the gender gap in the business world, promoting economic diversity, and encouraging innovation in various sectors.
“Despite an increased flow of capital to Africa, women have still been underrepresented at all levels of the investment landscape. Our goal is to address this barrier and improve the ecosystem by supporting female-led African private equity and venture capital funds,” says Sarah Ngamau, Managing Director, Moremi Fund.
Under the Moremi Platform, the firm has unveiled the first cohort of the accelerator program, which also serves as a mentorship, capacity-building, and technical assistance platform, targeting 40 female entrepreneurs and fund managers annually.
The World Economic Forum has identified Sub-Saharan Africa as having the world’s highest rate of women involved in entrepreneurial activity, with women making up 58 percent of Africa’s self-employed population.
Building on this strong foundation, Africa requires strategies that prioritize gender-smart investment practices. The Moremi platform is a three-pillar initiative involving an accelerator program, a warehousing/lending facility, and a Fund of Funds that aims to empower the next generation of African women enterprises and promote gender-equitable fund management.
Knowledge gap for women in business
According to Kuramo CEO and Founder Wale Adeosun, the program will address the significant funding and knowledge gap for women in business, a major barrier to the inclusive, sustainable economic and social development of countries in Africa. This includes sharpening the skills of women fund managers who will, in turn, help promote the growth of women-driven enterprises.
“We believe that just as we were able to address gaps with African GPs (fund managers) in the past, we can achieve a similarly catalytic impact with our gender lens initiative,” he explains.
Shaka Kariuki, Co-CEO at Kuramo Capital, notes that the firm’s strategy leverages its presence in Africa to drive value and achieve long-term, sustainable capital growth.
“We remain dedicated to our mission of fostering the growth of funds that will in turn generate value and provide risk-adjusted returns to investors. Simultaneously, we are committed to empowering the communities in which we operate with sustainable solutions,” he explained.
Kuramo Capital Management is an independent investment management firm founded in 2010, dedicated to channeling private commercial capital into Africa. Over the past decade, it has significantly reshaped the private equity landscape in Africa, managing nearly $500 million and catalyzing almost $53 million for African private equity firms and businesses.