Releaf Raises $3.3m Pre-Series A, Unveils New Technologies
The Nigerian agri-tech startup makes it easier for consumer goods manufacturers in Africa to access high-quality ingredients for their factories.
Releaf has raises $3.3 million in an oversubscribed pre-Series A funding round and also announced some new technologies.
The funding round was led by Samurai Incubate Africa, which re-invested after leading Releaf’s seed round, with participation from Consonance Investment Managers. Stephen Pagliuca, chairman of Bain Capital, and Jeff Ubben, board member at World Wildlife Fund and founder of Inclusive Capital Partners, also invested.
Starting with sustainable oil palm in Nigeria, the startup develops technology to enable decentralised purchasing and processing of raw crops to improve profitability and prevent post-harvest loss for a more climate-resilient future.
The startup said it has raised a US$4.2 million seed round in 2021, and has now followed that up with a further US$3.3 million in pre-Series A bridge capital to support the launch of two new technologies. Those are Kraken II – a portable version of its award-winning palm nut de-sheller – and SITE, a geospatial mapping application that informs the most profitable positioning of food processing assets.
Uzoma Ayogu, CTO and co-founder of Releaf, said “We are excited to have partnered with an exceptional cohort of investors and collaborators to roll out these technologies. To make food supply chains profitable, we must maximise extraction yields with leading processing technology and minimize logistics costs by bringing processing capacity closer to farmers.
“Before Releaf, stakeholders had to choose between one or the other – large factories had great technology but were far away, leaving most farmers with rudimentary technology to process their crops. We’re now able to maximise both,” Ayogu added.
Rena Yoneyama, managing partner at Samurai Incubate Africa, said “We are excited to continue supporting their ambitious vision to create efficient supply chains within Africa’s agricultural market. They have added key members to their management team and continue to impress us with their rapid commercial growth and technological development. We look forward to more of the same success as the team rolls out Kraken II and SITE.”