Adesuwa Okunbo Rhodes, Aruwa Capital Management

Lagos-based Aruwa Capital Management, a growth equity firm investing in businesses that are either women-led or provide goods and services for women, has closed its debut fund on $20 million. Some key points:

  • Personnel: Aruwa was founded by Adesuba Okunbo Rhodes, a former leverage finance banker from JPMorgan, who subsequently established Syntaxis Capital’s Africa-focused business.
  • Investors: The first institutional investor into the fund was Visa Foundation, the firm said in a press release. It was followed by Mastercard Foundation Africa Growth fund, Nyala Venture and “leading family businesses from Africa, Europe and the United States”, the firm said. Thirty percent of the fund comes from local investors.
  • Deals: The fund is already 45 percent deployed across six investments.
  • They say: “Adesuwa started Aruwa to address the investment gap that women led enterprises face in Africa. They comprise 40 percent of all small and medium enterprises (SMEs), yet receive only 1 percent of startup capital due to the lack of female capital allocators in the region.”