EMURGO Africa, an Africa-focused entity of EMURGO Middle East & Africa (“EMURGO MEA”), and Kepple Africa Ventures Inc. (“Kepple”), a pan-African venture capital firm, has announced the establishment of a business joint venture EMURGO Kepple Ventures to further accelerate its strategic partnership investing in African Web3 businesses.
EMURGO Africa and Kepple signed an MoU in September 2022 to jointly spearhead Web3 investment opportunities including token investments in Africa. Despite recent challenges such as the crypto winter and regulatory setbacks, EMURGO Kepple Ventures believes there is a long-term fundamental need for blockchain-based solutions in Africa.
While there has been wide adoption of cryptocurrencies, active trading at various crypto exchanges, and growing money transfer services through stablecoins, startups are now creating diverse real use cases from Africa using blockchain technology and smart contracts.
For example, land title registry has not been properly functioning under the existing centralized system in many African countries. This has been a significant bottleneck in the growth of the real estate and property markets. To solve this issue, Web3 startups are creating decentralized registry systems to ensure transparent and immutable transactions. Another Web3 use case is crop insurance for farmers. Under the current insurance system, trigger events such as flooding or droughts have to be certified manually, causing errors and delays to cover insurance claims. Using smart contracts combined with satellite, climate, and ecological data, payouts to farmers can now be automated based on predetermined parameters.
The mission of EMURGO Kepple Ventures is to create a better world by empowering businesses and people with a more transparent and efficient system backed by products and services leveraging blockchain-based Web3 technologies. EMURGO Kepple Ventures aims to accelerate this transformation by creating more collaboration and synergies between Web2 and Web3 startups, and by catalyzing the capital flow from conventional businesses and financial institutions to Web3 startups in Africa.
EMURGO Kepple Ventures will be led by current EMURGO MEA co-CEO Yosuke Yoshida who will serve as CEO. Yoshida is the former CEO of EMURGO Japan, where EMURGO was first established, and brings nearly 20 years of professional experience in M&A and cross-border trading as the manager of Japan’s largest investment company in the power sector, having led multiple international and government projects in Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Aoi Narita will serve as Director and is a venture capitalist with experience engaging with African startups for two years. Before EMURGO Kepple Ventures, she was an analyst at Accenture in charge of the implementation of the ERP system.