Nigeria’s Norebase Raises $1M To Scale Across Africa

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Norebase, a Nigerian trade tech startup that enables founders and businesses to launch and scale across multiple African countries simultaneously or on a periodic basis, has raised a US$1 million pre-seed fundraising round.

Norebase’s pre-seed financing was headed by pan-African funds Samurai Incubate and Consonance Investment. Sahil Lavingia of Gumroad, Kinfolk VC, Future Africa, Ventures Platform, Microtraction, Boleh Venture, Voltron Capital, Wuri Ventures, and Afropeneur are more venture capitalists.

The round was also attended by prominent figures in Africa’s tech industry, including Shola Akinlade, CEO of Paystack; Odunayo Eweniyi, COO of PiggyVest; Adia Sowho, CMO of MTN Nigeria; and Seni Sulyman, CEO of BlackOps.

The funds will be used to improve Norebase’s plug-and-play API, expand its trademark registration technology stack, and hire additional talent, Onayemi said.

Why The Investors Invested

Norebase asserts that it has had significant growth since its inception. The firm claims to have grown transaction volumes by 100% month over month for the last six months. Additionally, it claims to have raised income by 40% month over month during this time period. Among its regular clients are businesses we’ve previously featured, including Brass, Nestcoin, Edenlife, Orda, and Sudo Africa, as well as GetEquity, Workpay, Kloudcommerce, and Patricia.

“What we do multiplies the valuation of almost every startup because then they can access more markets from the get-go,” said the founder of the partners using its platform.

A Look At What The Startup Does

Onayemi and Tope Obanla launched Norebase in September 2021. According to Norebase, businesses who use its platform can incorporate in any African country in “a matter of minutes” and expand to new locations in as little as a week. Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Rwanda, Senegal, Togo, Tanzania, Ivory Coast, Egypt, Mauritius, and Burkina Faso are among these countries.

Additionally, Norebase upsells other services subject to legal and compliance obligations. These services include the establishment of bank accounts, virtual mailing addresses, and trademark and intellectual property registration. Norebase does not charge a flat cost and instead charges consumers according to the services they request, Onayemi stated during the conference, without expanding on the company’s pricing structure.

Adetola Onayemi was a member of the team that negotiated the deal, which took effect in January 2021. His experience from this activity, together with his recent work as a technical consultant to Nigeria’s vice president’s office, inspired him to found Norebase, a trade technology business that just raised $1 million in a pre-seed round.

Onayemi, a lawyer by profession, said the concept for Norebase sprang out of discussions with clients and colleagues in the technology sector about how they could exploit AfCFTA for their businesses.

“I had done all this work in policy, ease of doing business, free trade agreement, and I was advising some people in tech who would say, ‘listen, I just raised new capital to enter new markets, I dont know how I’m supposed to navigate it,’” the chief executive said in an interview. “Providing a framework where people can operate and scale their solutions to several markets at once is incredibly important. Our solution is for people in the local market moving into their first market or a company in their fourth market trying to scale their enterprise.”

Norebase just began offering African businesses the option of incorporating in the United States. Additionally, it launched the Incorporation API, a plug-and-play tool that enables third-party service providers such as payment processors and banks to offer incorporation services to their customers.

Norebase’s inclusion-as-a-service plugin establishes the company as a worldwide player in the commerce technology arena. It is one of the few companies, along with Firstbase, that provides such services. The program, which is presently only available in Nigeria, the United States, and Kenya, has nine partners; however, the CEO declined to disclose their names.

Featured image: Tola Onayemi (CEO, Norebase). Source: Norebase