Former governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai plans to launch a $100 million venture capital fund for startups in Nigeria, particularly those in the Kaduna tech ecosystem.
The former governor plans to match his ambitions with actions. He is willing to stake $2 million of his money for the offtake of the fund. He plans to convince investors to provide the remaining funding. The investors will mostly be those “who believe in us but don’t have the capacity or the time to do the analysis and evaluation. But they trust our judgment and they will come with us.”
He was in Marrakech in November for the Africa Investment Forum where he spoke to BusinessDay.
The former governor who played a significant role in the emergence of the current Nigerian president as the party’s candidate, seems to have put his disappointments behind him.
In Marrakech, there was no trace of the man who became the target of much social media trolling. The El-Rufai that showed up in Marrakech was looking spritely and took part in all the sessions of the Africa Investment Forum, a multi-stakeholder, multi-disciplinary platform with the vision to channel capital towards critical sectors to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, the African Development Bank’s High 5s, and the African Union’s Agenda 2063.
According to him, he wants to set up a venture capital fund or private equity that will invest in young Nigerians with innovative ideas. It doesn’t matter what segment of the economy the ideas are. It could be in agriculture. ICT or the creative industry, so long as it has the potential to add value to the world, these are the ideas that El-Rufai and his fund will target.