Nest, a Hong Kong based investment firm and incubator, has set up shop in Nairobi; first office in Africa. Nest is looking for African startups and entrepreneurs in whom it can invest and work with, through the provision of early stage funding, incubation, and mentorship.
The venture capital firm’s portfolio includes investments in 49 different companies including Gametime, Mapkin, Onename and True Link. The setting up of its office in Africa will now also provide African startup access to Nest’s extensive global reach and network.
The firm’s Nairobi office is located at the co-working space, Nairobi Garage headed by Aaron Fu; former Regional Digital Lead at Standard Chartered Bank. Mr. Fu is seen as having brought his experience in financial services and technology he gained while working in Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Fu praised the Kenyan market as having a vibrant tech community and market opportunities that present a unique proposition to link two continents through the Nairobi-Hong Kong partnership.
As cited by Capital FM, Fu said, “Kenya is an exciting frontier market and Nest has the opportunity to be one of the first overseas organizations to make an impact and accelerate the growth of startups in Silicon Savannah. While we are based in Kenya, we will be working across Africa to find the best ideas and talent, in particular, Lagos, Accra and Cape Town where the startup scene is already flourishing,”
Nest.vc was founded back in 2010 by Simon Squibb. It is also the only private full-service startup ecosystem providing end-to-end support to startups in matters such as marketing, strategy, funding, incubation, mentoring and access to networks. Squibb says Africa has a lot of potential in driving talented entrepreneurs who can push business across the continent to new heights.
In a statement, Squibb said, “As part of Nest’s overseas expansion strategy we made the decision to launch in Africa in order to be one of the first to offer access to Asia. We already have a presence in London and shortly the US, and will look to bring this extended network to Africa’s entrepreneurs.”
Nest is said to introduce into the Kenyan market, its corporate accelerator program where it links entrepreneurs, innovators, and the corporate sectors. Back in its home country, Nest is a partner to various international brands including Asia’s leading insurer AIA and DBS Bank.