Chari acquires Ivory Coast startup Diago

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  • Morocco-based B2B e-commerce and fintech startup Chari, has acquired Diago, an Ivorian app that connects local shops to FMCG producers and importers.
  • This marks Chari’s third acquisition to date. Chari acquired Axa Credit, the credit brand of Axa Assurance Maroc back in March, and acquired fintech app Karny.ma in August last year. 
  • Founded in 2020 by Sophia Alj and Ismael Belkhayat, Chari aims to digitise the retail value chain in Francophone Africa. It offers a marketplace and embedded finance platform that connects informal stores and retailers to FMCG suppliers
  • Earlier this year, Chari raised an undisclosed bridge round at a valuation of $100 million.  

Press release 

Founded in January 2020, Chari is an FMCG and financial services digital distributor targeting small retailers in Francophone Africa. Chari launched its operations in Morocco before expanding to Tunisia in early 2022. 

Today, Chari has announced that it has taken over 100% stake in Diago, an Ivorian app that connects neighborhood shops to FMCG producers/importers. 

Founded in 2021 by Amidou Diarra and Ali Ouattara, two former managers at Glovo and PepsiCo, diagoapp.net operates exclusively in Abidjan. Ali and Amidou will remain CEO and COO, respectively, and will oversee local business growth before expanding their footprint to other Sub-Saharan countries. 

“Diago’s entire team will receive Chari’s full support functions. Chari’s Casablanca back office will help Diago team in setting up operations, IT tools and customer service,” said Cyrille Jacques, Vice-President of Chari in charge of leading international expansion. 

After a successful proof of concept in Morocco, Chari aspires to become the leader of this business model in Francophone Africa.

“The secret of a successful expansion is to build a local team that masters local market dynamics. The real challenge is to convince local entrepreneurs to join forces with Chari to grow faster. We continue to surround ourselves with young and ambitious entrepreneurs from Francophone Africa to build together a pan-African giant of FMCG and financial services distribution,” says Ismael Belkhayat, co-founder and CEO of Chari. 

Chari has acquired Diago, primarily, in an all-stock transaction. The deal was handled by AF Legal and RBB International firms, representing Chari, and Houda Law firm, representing the Ivorian startup.