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London Tech Week

Nigeria’s ‘Amazon of food’ Vendease grabs $30M for its 12-hour delivery model

Vendease founders
Image credits: Vendease

Africa’s restaurants and food businesses feed 700 million people across the continent daily. However, these businesses lose $100 billion annually due to expensive and unreliable supply, limited access to data to inform procurement decisions, wastage and theft, as well as limited access to capital to fund procurement.

Vendease’s digital procurement engine makes it easier for restaurants in 8 cities across Nigeria and Ghana to buy food supplies at considerably cheaper rates than open market prices, with guaranteed 12-hour delivery. This investment round follows the $4.4 million investment secured by digital procurement platform Remedial Health to deliver medicines in 24 hours across Nigeria.

$30M investment from Africa-focused funds

Nigerian startup Vendease has raised $30 million in an equity and debt funding round. The Series A equity round of $20 million was co-led by TLcom and Partech, in a rare joint investment by two of the biggest Africa-focused funds. The equity round also included VentureSouq, Hustle fund, Hack VC, GFR Fund, Kube VC, Magic Fund and Kairos Angels, who returned after participating in the previous round. The $10 million debt round was raised from the local finance market.

The investment will be used by Vendease to consolidate its growth and operations in Nigeria and Ghana, and to support its expansion across the continent. It will also be used for the development of new solutions and services to drive growth across the food value chain.

Commenting on the funding, Tunde Kara, CEO and co-founder of Vendease, said, “Our mission is to enable the efficient flow of food across the continent, from point of production to point of consumption. It is more than just placing orders for supplies, we want to transform how the entire sector works and remove the bottlenecks that stunt the growth of restaurants and food businesses. With greater efficiency in the supply chain, we believe we can unlock more growth opportunities across board, which is why we are excited to have raised this round, led by two of Africa’s biggest VCs, who understand what it takes to power such an ambitious mission.”

Changes to its board

Following their investments, Andreata Muforo (Partner at TLcom) and Cyril Collon (General Partner at Partech) will join Vendease’s board as new directors.

Andreata Muforo, Partner at TLcom, said, “Restaurants and food businesses play a vital role in communities across the continent and Vendease is on a mission to bring affordability, convenience, and reliability to these businesses and builds a platform that allows the wider food sector to optimise their operations. We look forward to working alongside the team as they pursue the next phase of growth and unlock significant value in Africa’s fragmented food supply chain.”

“Vendease is delivering vital solutions that impact critical issues around the food system in Africa,” said Cyril Collon, General Partner at Partech. “We are thrilled to be working with them to take these solutions to more restaurants and food businesses across the continent. We see huge scope for growth in Nigeria and beyond and we are very optimistic about what can be achieved”.

How was Vendease founded?

Vendease was founded in 2020 by Tunde Kara, Olumide Fayankin, Gatumi Aliyu and Wale Oyepeju in Nigeria. Kara and Fayankin grew up watching their parents, a farmer and a restaurant owner, struggle with inefficiencies in Nigeria’s food system. They realised that the layer of middlemen in the food system and the negotiations between buyers and sellers resulted in late payments, and unreliable deliveries and good food got wasted.

They founded Vendease to streamline the food supply chain by cutting most of the middlemen out of the equation. The company serves as a marketplace that connects restaurants and food businesses directly to farmers and manufacturers. It is also a logistics service, an inventory and business management partner, and a lender.

Reliance B2B marketplace

In addition to its 12-hour delivery service, Vendease is building the operating system that automates the flow of food from farm to restaurant, optimises business operations across the value chain through accurate data deployment, reduces wastage and drives profitability. Restaurant owners simply need to download the app, complete the registration process in a few clicks and they will be able to access all the benefits of Vendease’s platform. They can also access working capital through Vendease’s Buy-Now-Pay-Later offering to maximise the growth opportunities available to them.

Vendease partners with medium- to large-scale farmers, as well as groups of small-scale farmers that grow scarce or speciality produce, to ensure a consistent supply of goods for its online catalogue. It offers transparent pricing and timely payments for Nigerian farmers.

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