Tofino Capital Closes First Round of $10M Fund to Back Startups in Africa

Eliot Pence and Aubrey Hruby, co-founders, Tofino Capital

Tofino Capital has launched its $10 million fund and has announced the first close of this fund at $5 million, with a goal to reach the final close in nine months.

Founded by Eliot Pence and Aubrey Hruby, Tofino Capital invests in early-stage companies in venture scalable markets, faced with a lack or inadequate venture capital. It has in its portfolio companies like SeamlessHR, Sabi, Mecho, Gloopro, Social Stack and others.

The founders have experience in public relations, having founded InsiderPR, one of the well-known PR firms in African tech and have worked for over 100 startups, including SWVL, Flutterwave and Foodology. They have also worked for 15 years with various U.S. companies and family offices involved in investing in frontier markets; they include the Whitaker Group and the Atlantic Council.

With the current fund, Tofino Capital seeks to back startups in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East, including countries such as Bangladesh, Egypt, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, and Mexico. The fund will focus on B2B-focused startups in fintech, logistics, and marketplaces themes. Between $50,000 and $500,000 will be invested in these early-stage companies, particularly pre-seed and seed stages.

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Not limited to early-stage startups, Tofino Capital is also interested in late-stage startups, which it thinks investing in both early and Series C as well as later startups is the best risk-hedged approach to investing in emerging markets. However, its investment in late-stage startups will be very limited compared to those at the early stage.

Limited partners for the fund include U.S. and European family offices, WS Investment Company, the investment fund of law firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and executives from a cross-section of U.S. startups.

 



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