Jetstream Africa, the Ghanaian cross-border logistics startup, has secured $13 million in equity and debt pre-Series A financing. 

Fintech lender and private equity firm Cauris and French development institution Proparco, through its bridge fund, provided the debt financing while the equity investors include Octerra, Wuri Ventures, Seed9, The MBA Fund and ASCVC. 

The latest funding investment comes about 18 months after Jetstream announced a $3 million seed round (including $1 million in debt). Jetstream says this new investment will allow it to expand into new countries — it’s currently in 29 (12 in Africa) countries — and continue to develop its technology platform, which vertically aggregates fragmented logistics and financing vendors in the world of African trade. 

Jetstream’s new business model has shifted to that of a freight forwarder. The company now involves itself in the end-to-end movement of shippers’ cargo (both import and export), charges a fee and, most importantly, supplies finance to those who need it. 

Miishe Addy, Chief Executive Officer of Jetstream said: “Running those two lines side by side, we observed that the import or export business controls the supply chain. Although the cargo owners and freight forwarders have a lot of information asymmetry, the importer and exporter can put pressure on the freight forwarder to digitize the supply chain. We simplified our business into just the import-export product line by working directly with them with a combination of trade financing and logistics.”

Jetstream has grown its trade finance product from the $1 million debt it secured in mid-2021 to about $9 million in total loans disbursed so far. Its projection is to increase that amount fivefold by the end of this year.

Furthermore, the e-logistics startup has scaled from disbursing one loan per month to up to 50 loans per month after switching its business model, thus becoming EBITDA positive. Also, revenue has grown by 48% and active customers by 102% within the past year, according to a statement shared by the e-logistics startup, which handles shipments consisting of 47% air freight, 44% ocean freight and 9% ground transport. 

Tokunboh Ishmael, co-founder and principal partner at Alitheia IDF, one of Jetstream’s investors, says this round of funding, which supports the startup’s expansion to new markets, will see it capitalize on trade policies like AfCFTA, “enabling richer inter-continental trade which is needed to support inclusive economic development and unleashes the continent’s full potential.”

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