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Orange Ventures and Digital Africa enhance support for African startups through the Orange Digital Center network, boosting investments and fostering innovation. (Image source: Adobe Stock)

At Vivatech, a significant partnership was established between Fayçal Adlouni of Orange Ventures and Grégoire de Padirac from Digital Africa, aiming to enhance the growth and support of African startups within the Orange Digital Centers (ODC) network

Asma Ennaifer, executive director of CSR, communications and the Orange Digital Center program for Orange Africa and the Middle East, welcomed this collaboration, which builds upon the strategic alliance formed with Digital Africa in June 2023 to boost startup financing and assistance.

The alliance underscores the dedication of both Orange Ventures and Digital Africa to intensify their investment in startups nurtured by the ODC network. The Fuzé initiative now allows for the doubling of investments by either party, facilitated by a collaborative evaluation of applications and potential co-financing opportunities. The Orange Digital Center, present in 17 African and Middle Eastern countries and 8 European nations, consolidates various complimentary programs—from digital education for youth to startup incubation, acceleration, and leader support—under one roof, fostering entrepreneurship and innovation across the region.

In its inaugural year, the Fuzé program by Digital Africa granted up to €50,000 to five startups within the ODC network. Among these, three are Cameroonian—Clinihome in Healthtech, Koree in Fintech, and Colorfol in cultural and creative sectors—and two are Senegalese—Tolbi in Agritech and Proboutik in Fintech. This financial support is poised to significantly bolster their operations.

The involvement of Orange Ventures, the venture capital branch of the Orange Group, marks a pivotal advancement in the shared goal of propelling startup growth. This joint support framework for African entrepreneurs seeking funding was met with enthusiasm and a unified commitment to success by representatives from Orange, OMEA, and Digital Africa during the partnership signing event.

Fayçal Adlouni, managing partner, Orange Ventures,remarked, “The Orange Group is fully committed to nurturing the future champions of the technology scene in Africa and the Middle East. This arrangement, involving Orange Middle East and Africa, Orange Ventures and Digital Africa will collectively enable us to concentrate our resources to create an environment conducive to the success of startups in Africa and the Middle East.”

Asma Ennaifer, executive director of CSR, Communications and the Orange Digital Center program for Orange Middle East and Africa, added, “Orange Digital Centers are true catalysts for innovation, where ideas take shape and dreams become reality. By joining forces with Orange Ventures and Digital Africa, we're giving African startups the means to thrive and make their mark in a rapidly expanding digital world.”

Grégoire de Padirac, CEO of Digital Africa, said: “I am delighted by this partnership with Orange, with whom we share the same commitment to supporting African entrepreneurs from the earliest stages of maturity by providing them with a comprehensive range of financing and support services.”

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