Andela CEO sees African techies solving ‘world most pressing problems’ amid $40m fundings

Andela CEO sees African techies solving ‘world most pressing problems’ amid $40m fundings

Andela CEO sees African techies solving ‘world most pressing problems’ amid $40m fundings

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Africa’s technology talents are now positioned to provide solutions to the world’s most pressing, Jeremy Johnson, co-founder and CEO of Andela, has said amid fresh injection of $40 million into the technology company.

“Over the past three years, we’ve helped prove to the world that brilliance is evenly distributed. It’s now time to prove that our model of investing in extraordinary people isn’t just viable, but revolutionary,” says Jeremy Johnson, co-founder and CEO of Andela. “Increasingly, African technologists will be launching high-impact companies and solving some of the world’s most pressing problems, and this round will help that happen faster.”

Andela, which has a Nigeria office, builds high-performing engineering teams with Africa’s most talented software developers, and recently secured $40 million in Series C funding. The investment was led by pan-African venture firm CRE Venture Capital with participation from DBL Partners, Amplo, Salesforce Ventures, and Africa-focused TLcom Capital.

Meanwhile Andela has also announced that Dr Omobola Johnson, the former Minister for Communication Technology will be joining its board following the fresh rounds of fundings secured by the tech company.

Existing investors, including Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, GV, and Spark Capital, also participated. The round, which marks one of the largest investments ever led by an African venture firm into an Africa-based company, brings Andela’s total venture funding to over $80 million.

Existing investors, including Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, GV, and Spark Capital, also participated. The round, which marks one of the largest investments ever led by an African venture firm into an Africa-based company, brings Andela’s total venture funding to over $80 million.

Andela team seen at an event. Andela, which has a Nigeria office, builds high-performing engineering teams with Africa's most talented software developers, and recently secured $40 million in Series C funding   Photo credit: Andela
Andela team seen at an event. Andela, which has a Nigeria office, builds high-performing engineering teams with Africa’s most talented software developers, and recently secured $40 million in Series C funding Photo credit: Andela

Andela was launched in 2014 to combat the global technical talent shortage by investing in Africa’s most talented software developers. With an estimated 1.3M software jobs unfilled in 2016 in the U.S. alone, it’s clear that the growth of today’s major technology ecosystems is inhibited by a severe lack of talent. To solve this, Andela invests in high potential pools of brainpower across the African continent to help more than 100 partner companies build distributed engineering teams. These partners range from industry leaders like Viacom and Mastercard Labs to high-growth technology companies such as Gusto and GitHub.

With offices in Lagos, Nigeria, Nairobi, Kenya, and Kampala, Uganda, Andela has hired 500 developers to date — the top 0.7% of more than 70,000 applicants from across the continent. Selected developers spend six months in a rigorous on boarding program before being matched with one of Andela’s partner companies as full-time engineering team members. Beyond recruiting elite development talent, Andela is catalyzing the growth of tech ecosystems across the continent by open-sourcing its content and partnering with organizations including Google and Pluralsight to provide resources and mentorship to developers.

Pule Taukobong, Founding Partner of CRE Venture Capital, also says that “at present, there is more capital to fund ideas globally than there are people to build them. Andela is providing a solution to this global talent dilemma while building a business case for one of Africa’s greatest assets: our people.”

Andela will use the capital to fuel its aggressive expansion plans. The company aims to launch offices in two additional African countries over the next year, doubling its developer base from 500 to 1,000 to meet growing demand. Alongside this round, Pule Taukobong of CRE, Julia Gillard, former Australian Prime Minister and Amplo Board Partner, and Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner at TLcom and former Minister of Communication Technology in Nigeria, will be joining Andela’s board.

Omobola Johnson
Dr. Omobola Johnson, former Minister of Communication Technology for Nigeria, will be joining the Andela board, the company has announced

The company is also welcoming Salesforce Ventures, TLcom, DBL, and Amplo to the “Andela family of investors.” Andela announced that “with them, Omobola Johnson, former ICT Minister of Nigeria and Partner at TLcom, Julia Gillard, former Prime Minister of Australia and Amplo Board Partner, and Nancy Pfund, Managing Director of DBL, will be joining our board as well.”

For the Andela team, the new rounds of funding and growing partnership is bring the company closer to its vision to change the world.

“When we first started Andela, even those who loved and believed in us thought it was a bit crazy. But with every partnership, we’re proving to the world that brilliance is evenly distributed and has nothing to do with nationality or gender. Soon, the demographic challenges that many associate with Africa will instead become an advantage. Increasingly, African technologists will be leading companies solving some of the world’s most pressing challenges and, simultaneously, reversing age-old misconceptions about talent and potential”, the company said in a statement.

“In July of 2014, Andela put out a call for aspiring software developers in Nigeria. Through Twitter alone, we received 700 applicants, interviewed a few dozen, and accepted six to join Andela’s first cohort in Lagos.

“That month, we also met Pule Taukobong. A few weeks later, as head of the Africa Angels Network, he became Andela’s first institutional investor from the continent.

“Three years later, Andela has grown to nearly 800 people across four countries. We’ve received more than 70,000 applicants and accepted the top 0.7% — around 500 developers to date — and more than 100 of the world’s leading tech companies depend on Andela developers from Nigeria, Kenya, and Uganda.”

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