Post investment operations: Supporting founders & investors to succeed

Author: Omotola, Legal expert at GHC


Transparency is the foundation on which trust is built, innovation thrives, and collective goals of fund managers, founders and investors are achieved.  In today’s fast-paced and dynamic business environment, achieving success requires more than just individual talent and hard work. There is a unique demand for transparency in collaboration and coordination, especially in fund management operations. It is the goal of every investor that his/her investment is maximized for the best ROI rates. 


The interdependencies of fund management operations 

At its core, fund management operates a fluid system that requires interdependencies within teams. The fund management sector is very dynamic and ever-changing because market dynamics, regulatory environment and investor preferences are constantly evolving. To ensure collective success, dependency on each team member’s skill and expertise is of paramount significance. For instance, when a portfolio company (PC) is facing a major challenge which could adversely affect the value of the fund’s investment in the PC, the fund manager has to rely on the expertise of its entire team (e.g legal, investment, finance planning & analysis) to manage and advice such PC on the best approach to resolve such issues and preserve the investment (this is often referred to as Portfolio Preservation Management). This activity requires the entire team to remain current with vital information and industry trends to be able to deliver the required value. A hands-on approach and over communication within the entire team is essential at this stage for a proactive resolution of any identified challenge. A reactionary hands-off approach by a fund manager will result in economic loss for the PC which in turn will lead to devaluing the fund’s investment and consequently, the fund’s entire portfolio. 

Transparency in fund management means open and clear communication about management, performance, activities and objectives of investments within the team. Every team must have comprehensive and accurate information at all times. The unrestricted flow of information and elimination of silo operations creates a culture of open communication, effective teamwork, systemic reliance among others between all internal and external stakeholders. Transparency empowers the team to share insights, ideas, and concerns openly, more importantly, the collective intelligence of the team generates efficiency for smooth operations.  This is what guarantees success for both Limited Partners (LPs) [investors] and PCs [founders]. 

Achieving LP success through transparent operations 

Reporting and disclosures are great ways of ensuring transparency with Investors. It requires providing regular detailed reports on activities of the fund including fund performance, holdings, fees, expenses, potential risks & conflicts of interest, market conditions and other relevant metrics. Reporting may take the form of newsletters, investor update meetings, LP Dataroom housing various information about the fund’s investments and fund operations. Employing the various forms of reporting ensures the investors have current information on the fund’s operations and their investment performance. This in turn equips an investor with vital information to make informed decisions about their risk tolerance and investment objectives. Transparency with investors also involves addressing queries and concerns clearly and promptly. This promotes a culture of trust, reliability and confidence between investors and the fund manager. 

Achieving founder success through transparent operations 

Portfolio management is a key tool to achieving transparency with PCs. This involves establishing effective communication channels, sharing information, and encouraging open dialogue between the fund manager and PCs. Transparency between PCs and fund managers is the driver to value delivery and the quality of support given to the PC. By fostering effective communication, fund managers build strong relationships with founders and create an environment for long-term success and mutual growth.  It is imperative that the PC succeeds because their success is what guarantees the fund’s success and ROI to investors.  

In conclusion, implementing transparent operations requires a deliberate and proactive approach which is balanced by established guidelines for confidentiality and data privacy. Organizations need to foster a culture that values open communication and information sharing with the relevant stakeholders. This can be achieved through regular team meetings, investor update calls, collaborative platforms, and transparent reporting mechanisms. 


Sustainable practices for transparent fund operations  

  1. Avoiding silo team operations: Always foster collaboration and cross-functional engagement within and across teams. This improves productivity, innovation, and cohesiveness of the fund operations.  
  2. Ensuring your information is collected and stored using best practices for naming and structuring of collated information and documents: This facilitates efficient retrieval and utilization of information across teams.
  3. Deploying transparent data collection and storage processes and systems for access by the entire team: This involves ensuring that information is available and accessible by the entire team. This could be through the implementation of a data management practice.
  4. Self-sufficiency on an individual level is magical: Team members should be empowered to rely on their skills, resourcefulness, and available information to navigate challenges.   
  5. Fostering internal and external responsiveness.: Cultivate the culture of proactiveness within the team, promptly addressing feedback, inquiries, and commitments. This builds agility and higher levels of operational excellence within the team. 

What methods have you deployed to achieve a successful post-investment operation in your organization? We would like to hear from you on how your organization supports its founders and investors.

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The relationship between digital national identity programs and economic growth in Africa & emerging markets

Author: Uqudo team and Ruby, Partner at GHC


What makes Africa a truly diverse and dynamic continent?

With a landmass that can fit in the US, India, Japan, Mexico and a few other EU countries, the sheer magnitude of Africa’s resources is truly inexplicable. Comprising 54 countries and over 3000 ethnic groups, Africa boasts a tapestry of languages, traditions, and histories. From the bustling markets of Marrakech to the savannahs of the Serengeti, the continent is a region of contrast and possibilities.

One of the most significant factors shaping Africa’s economic landscape is its population growth. With a current population of over 1.3 billion people, Africa is projected to reach 2.5 billion by 2050, making it the fastest-growing region in the world. Moreover, the continent’s youth population is booming, with over 60% of Africans under the age of 25. This demographic presents a unique opportunity for Africa to harness the energy and creativity of its young population.

Africa’s economic significance extends beyond its cultural and demographic diversity. Over the past decade, Africa’s GDP has been growing steadily, with a current average growth rate of around 3.8%. As Africa’s economy continues to evolve, it has the potential to become a major player in global markets.

While Africa’s economic growth and potential are promising, the continent also faces several challenges that must be addressed to fully unlock its opportunities. The informal nature of most African economies hinders access to basic services and job opportunities stagnating overall economic growth. 

By formalising their economies, African governments and private organisations can empower populations, boost GDP growth, and improve health and well-being. This can be achieved through regulatory reforms, capacity-building initiatives, and leveraging technology for efficiency and transparency.

The formalisation of the economy empowers individuals by creating formal jobs, promoting entrepreneurship, and fostering skills development. It enhances the quality of life, reduces poverty, and stimulates economic growth. Additionally, this would also contribute to GDP growth by increasing tax revenues, attracting investments, stimulating innovation, and enhancing productivity. Governments and private organisations must collaborate and leverage technological advancements to bridge the digital divide, expand internet access, and promote digital literacy to drive economic formalisation and inclusive development in Africa.


What is digital identity?

Digital identity plays a crucial role in today’s advancing world, offering opportunities for accessing services and driving economic growth. It refers to proof of an individual’s identity that can be verified online, issued by governments, organisations, or individuals. It consists of various information pieces like name, date of birth, ID number, and more, used for identification.

A well-planned digital identity system empowers underrepresented communities and contributes to economic growth. Digital economies already account for over 15% of global GDP, and trust-based ecosystems formed through efficient identity verification are key factors in propelling this growth. Digital identity also enables individuals from vulnerable regions to access essential rights and public services.

In contrast to digital identity systems, paper-based IDs, such as passports and driver’s licenses, contain personal information that requires physical inspection for verification. These IDs are prone to damage, loss, and theft and are less convenient for online activities. On the other hand, digital ID documents rely on advanced encryption and security protocols, protecting against fraud and identity theft. They can be easily accessed remotely through digital devices, offering greater convenience for online transactions and activities.

Why are digital national identity programs important for economic inclusion?

Digital national identity programs aim to provide citizens with a secure and reliable way to authenticate their identity. These programs typically involve the creation of a digital identity credential, such as a smart card, mobile app, or another form of digital token, that can be used to verify a user’s identity when accessing government services, making online purchases, or engaging in other digital transactions.


Digital IDs can also help governments reduce fraud and corruption, which can stimulate investment and economic activity by creating a more stable and predictable business environment. Additionally, digital IDs can help governments better target social safety net programs and subsidies, reducing waste and inefficiencies in government spending.

According to McKinsey, by 2030, digital identification could create economic value of up to $3.6 trillion globally. This includes both direct and indirect benefits, such as increased financial inclusion, reduced costs, and improved security and privacy.


When linked with digital payment systems, national IDs make public services more efficient. This enhances the accuracy of transactions, reduces the costs of doing business and identity frauds and also stimulates economic growth.


What are some examples of successful digital ID programs?

Digital national ID programs can provide a means for marginalised communities to obtain official identification documents, which can then be used to open bank accounts and access other financial services. Being direct and instantaneous, they can play a major role in enabling financial inclusion and providing greater access to basic services. 

For example, in India, the “Aadhaar” digital identification program has enabled the government to distribute social welfare benefits more efficiently and reduced corruption in the distribution process. Launched in 2009, Aadhar assigns a unique identification number to each of the 1.2b citizens of India and uses biometric data to verify their identity. 

By using “Aadhaar” to verify identity, the Indian government has been able to effectively distribute social welfare benefits, such as food and fuel subsidies to millions of eligible Indians. This has reduced fraud and leakage in the distribution process, resulting in significant cost savings for the government. In addition, Aadhaar has enabled greater financial inclusion by providing a means for citizens to access formal financial services, such as bank accounts and insurance, thereby impacting the lives of millions. This development has the potential to unlock 3-13% of GDP, according to estimates by McKinsey.


What challenges does Africa face while implementing digital national ID programs?

More than half a billion individuals in Africa lack an identity document, which has created an extensive barrier to accessing financial, healthcare, education and government services. This lack of identification creates a critical barrier to accessing financial services, with more than 30% of unidentified individuals facing difficulties in using financial services. This barrier is even more pronounced in marginalised sections of society, including women, migrants, rural communities and other vulnerable groups.

A major challenge African countries face while implementing digital identity systems is the fragmented landscape of the continent. With 54 countries and each with its own unique political, social, and economic context, there is no one-size-fits-all solution that can be applied across the continent. Each country has its own unique identity systems, regulatory frameworks, and data protection laws, making it difficult to develop standardised approaches to digital identity.

Another challenge lies in the lack of adequate technological infrastructure in many African countries to support digital ID programs, especially in rural areas where access to digital resources is greatly limited.

Moreover, some African countries also face challenges related to political instability, conflicts, and human rights violations. This makes it difficult to establish the necessary legal and institutional frameworks needed to implement digital identity systems. 

We have seen how India’s digital national ID program has been successful in addressing many of these challenges, and numerous lessons can be learned from these implementations in the context of Africa. 

India and Africa have faced similar issues regarding digital transformation, which include low internet connectivity and a lack of digital infrastructure. With India’s rapidly growing digital economy, there is enormous potential for Africa to learn from India’s digital revolution. This includes the importance of having a robust institutional framework to support the development and implementation of a digital identity program. African countries would need to invest in developing a similar legal and institutional framework, as well as have clear guidelines for data privacy and security.


How can digital national ID programs be implemented across Africa?

Implementing digital national ID programs across Africa would require a joint effort by governments, private sector companies, and international organisations.

African countries would first have to leverage existing infrastructure, such as mobile networks and internet connectivity, to develop and implement digital national ID programs. This would help to minimise costs and ensure that the programs are accessible to a wide range of citizens. Along with this, legal and regulatory frameworks that define the collection, storage, and use of citizens’ data have to be established. 

A key factor in implementing digital ID programs would involve building partnerships with private sector companies to minimise costs and build on their existing infrastructure. This would help bring in technical expertise while reducing overall costs.

Let’s look into a few examples of already in-place digital ID cards in Africa, and the key challenges they face.


  • ECOWAS Card

A key example of a digital ID card in Africa is the ECOWAS Card, which lets individuals travel across the 16 ECOWAS states without a visa. The card has facilitated tourism, trade and cultural exchange among the member states. It also makes it easier for individuals to access services in these countries. Along with this, the ECOWAS ID card promotes a shared identity and enhances cooperation in various sectors, including security, agriculture, and infrastructure development.

One of the primary obstacles in implementing ECOWAS cards is ensuring consistent and effective implementation across all member countries. Each country has its own administrative procedures, infrastructure, and levels of digital readiness, which has often resulted in disparities in the issuance and recognition of ID cards. Harmonising these processes and establishing uniform standards can be complex and time-consuming.

uqudo’s digital infrastructure can help ECOWAS countries implement a standardised digital identity infrastructure that would support the exchange of data and uptake of products and services. This can be done using a combination of AI technology and alternative biometrics to create online identity profiles and connect people to a formal system.


  • M-Pesa

The M-Pesa card is a virtual card linked to a user’s M-Pesa account, allowing them to make payments and transactions at various merchants and withdraw cash from ATMs. It functions similarly to a debit card, where the cardholder can swipe or tap the card at point-of-sale (POS) terminals to make payments. It eliminates the need for carrying physical cash and enables individuals to manage their finances digitally.

Implementing the M-Pesa card has also faced numerous challenges, including the necessity of its acceptance in a wider network. For the card to be useful, it has to be accepted by a large number of merchants and businesses, which has been a hurdle in areas with limited access to technology and connectivity. Along with this, ensuring seamless cross-border transactions in the multiple countries M-Pesa operates is a complex affair.

uqudo’s scalable platform built on a cloud environment can facilitate cross-border transactions across the whole of Africa. Using a federated identity governments and enterprises across the continent can provide individuals with a seamless identity platform.


  • Voter ID Cards

Numerous African countries have a voter identification and registration system in place, but this process is often lengthy and cumbersome. In some countries, the entire process is poorly organised, leading to incomplete voter registration, which leads to excluding eligible voters in remote areas from the electoral process. 

uqudo has a proven track record of conducting the first digital elections in Oman, which was the first-ever national election in the region. This demonstrates uqudo’s ability to provide reliable and secure digital identity solutions for critical use cases like elections. This can be replicated in the African continent to allow individuals to exercise their electoral rights. 



Digital national identity programs have a profound impact on economic growth in Africa and emerging markets. By facilitating financial inclusion, streamlining access to products and services, improving government administration, and enhancing security, these programs create an enabling environment for economic development.

However, challenges such as infrastructure limitations, privacy concerns, inclusion issues, and political and regulatory hurdles need to be addressed to ensure the effective and inclusive implementation of these programs. Expanding coverage, strengthening data protection measures, fostering collaboration, and continuous evaluation is essential for maximising the positive impact of digital national ID programs on economic growth.

As Africa and emerging markets embrace the digital revolution, digital national ID programs serve as a catalyst for unlocking economic potential, empowering individuals, and creating a more inclusive and prosperous society. 

Now that we have established the importance of a structured digital identity program, we will discuss more on the framework for implementing national IDs in the African continent in our next blog.

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From airport hangar to leading VC firm: The story of Greenhouse Capital

Comms and PR team, GHC



Imagine this.

It’s 2011 and you’re standing in an airport hangar that has been converted into a tech hub, in the middle of Lagos, Nigeria. You’re surrounded by the buzz, the energy of hundreds of young talents that are eagerly building technology companies solving some of the region’s biggest challenges – solving big hairy questions such as “How do we put education online for millions of Africans?”, “How do we connect the continent to financial services” and “how do we bring affordable energy solutions to power every household?”.

This is where Bunmi and Kunmi, the founders of Venture Garden Group (VGG), started. After a decade of building technology companies in the United States, Bunmi and Kunmi returned to Lagos, joining forces with Demola, the third cofounder.   At the time, financial infrastructure across the continent was sparse and the first layer of all the critical sectors of the economy required companies to solve for enabling transactions and payments. Thanks to VGG’s venture building platform, they successfully launched 15 businesses, which are still operational today.

As our venture builder grew, we continued to build capacity and train the incredible raw talent that was coming out of universities and high schools across the country. And since then, over 1000 people have been empowered & trained through our ventures at VGG.

However, solving the biggest problems and building the most daring solutions, required us to expand the ecosystem we had built in VGG. Bunmi and Kunmi wanted to find a way to catalyse other entrepreneurs by sharing their experience, lessons learned and mentorship. Having personally felt the challenging impact of capital gaps in the market, they also knew they needed to back founders with their own capital.

GIBE (Garden Institute of Business and Entrepreneurship) was Greenhouse Capital’s 1.0 version. It was an initiative focused on supporting young talent at the beginning of their entrepreneurial journey.

One of the GIBE participants was Laolu, who went on co-found Yep! (Previously E-settlement Limited (ESL)), was one of the GIBE participants and our very first investment. ESL is dedicated to creating jobs and improving businesses through inclusive fintech and agency banking. However, what drew Bunmi and Kunmi to Laolu was his passion & desire to transform the lives and businesses of Africa’s everyday people. Of course, it was a no-brainer for us to help Laolu succeed.

So, after all these years, we asked him a few questions about his experience with us, and this is what he had to say…  ‘

Laolu, we love you too!

Bunmi Akinyemiju, our founding partner, recalls “We wanted to be the partners we never had, supporting founders who looked like us, when very few investors ever paid attention. Initially it was just us, backing founders with our own capital. But where we saw magic, was when we paired our on-ground teams, know-how and relationships to create growth and outcomes for our portfolio companies. That has always been our formula”


We’ve often felt that the term venture investing didn’t fully encapsulate everything we do with our companies, feeling more like an extension of the teams we build and invest in rather than simply a capital provider.

“The team is incredibly committed to the ethos. During the pandemic, the partners literally moved to Kenya to be on ground and understand the market, tech ecosystem and build their network to better support their portfolio companies. We were backward engineering outcomes before we had invested in the regions and today hold stakes in some of East Africa’s leading companies such as Marketforce & Pezesha.” – Surabhi Nimkar (Partner, Greenhouse Capital)

Although clichéd, Greenhouse Capital was actually built by founders for founders. It was out of necessity, responsibility, and passion to build our ecosystem and empower African entrepreneurs to move the needle for our continent. At the time, it was the only operator-led tech family office/ VC (Venture Capital) in the region, investing in companies in the same sectors we deeply understood- B2B Infrastructure, SME Ecosystems and Fintech. This came from our experience-backed thesis that the region needed to build out the digital pipes and plumbing to catalyse people and businesses to trade online. They were what people would call “boring businesses”. The ones that you can’t see, touch or feel the presence of, but quietly powers everything we do online.  Since 2016, we have deployed nearly $15m across 50+ companies. We’ve had a 7x exit and currently have an unrealised MOIC (Multiple of Invested Capital) of 5x.

“We also knew it was important to build the local LP (Limited Partners) ecosystem, but tech VC in Africa was a daring frontier that most local investors and businesspeople had not previously been exposed to. We’re forever grateful and humbled by the first 10 family office LPs (Limited Partners) (Limited Partners) who have been with us since day one”

Fast forward to today; Greenhouse Capital is a 10 person VC with the power of 300 technology experts behind us. We have built a platform that serves businesses all the way from MVP through to exit. Our portfolio companies can tap into the services focused on Market Expansion, licensing and compliance, outsourced finance, HR, Legal support functions and capital raising.

The core of our thesis remains largely the same, big infrastructure solutions across sectors where you can embed fintech… except with a keen focus on companies leveraging frontier technologies such as tokenisation, blockchain and AI. And everything we learned in our “First Fund” which was largely West Africa focused, we have now taken to other markets across East Africa and the Middle East.

We are no longer at the beginning of the Africa/ MENA story; we are well on our way…

In short- we know what it takes to win, and we’ve earned these stripes. We’ve been on-ground since 2011, building 15 innovative companies through our venture builder and supporting 50 companies through our family office turned VC. And we’re determined to continue generating outsized returns for founders and co-investors. We would love to partner with you, so please drop us a line, subscribe to our newsletter and watch this space.

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Partnership GHC X Emurgo

Comms and PR team, GHC

Greenhouse Capital and Emurgo Africa partner to build an investment plus advisory platform for fintech and web3 startups across Africa and the Middle East

Capital alone does not create success stories. This is the foundation and investment philosophy of the newly formed partnership between Emurgo and Greenhouse Capital that plans to invest in cutting-edge Web 3/Blockchain and fintech companies transitioning from fintech 2.0 to 3.0.  

The firms both believe that startups and investors see the greatest impact and return when capital is backed by deep operator support, local on-ground know-how, and access to exceptional talent. As such, the partnership is designed to provide startups with the resources they need to succeed in building for the blockchain space. This is the first and only operator-led investment partnership on the continent that brings together capital plus token advisory, blockchain infrastructure development, and talent upskilling to enable the creation and application of crypto-native solutions. 

“We’ve been working together for over a year now, co-investing in best-in-class companies such as Busha, ScaleX and Bitmama. We at Greenhouse are thrilled to be taking our partnership to the next level by solidifying how we work together to drive adoption of Web3/Blockchain and crypto by governments, private enterprises, and individuals.”  said Bunmi Akinyemiju, CEO of Greenhouse Capital. 

Further, the partners have been working together on a series of closed door round tables where they plan to bring together leading minds across distributed ledger technologies, academia, private enterprise, and African policymakers. Most recently, Greenhouse Capital co-hosted a workshop (alongside Imperial College) at the World Economic Forum in Davos that anchored on the question “How can we architect a new financial system for Africa?”. Emurgo’s Middle East & Africa co-CEO, Shogo Ishida, led the conversation on how blockchain can open barriers to trade and accelerate financial inclusion. 

The partnership is an important step forward in developing blockchain and cryptocurrency solutions in Frontier markets. The partnership brings together Greenhouse Capital’s expertise in early-stage venture capital and Emurgo’s focus on blockchain technology. By leveraging their respective strengths, the companies aim to invest in startups and companies that have the potential to create a more inclusive financial system in frontier markets 

EMURGO Middle East & Africa co-CEO Yosuke Yoshida (left); Greenhouse capital Partner Bunmi Akinyemiju (right)



About EMURGO Africa 

EMURGO Africa invests and partners with Africa-focused enterprises, startups, and accelerators to foster the development of socially impactful solutions on Cardano’s third generation and environmentally sustainable blockchain. To connect and learn more, visit 


About Greenhouse Capital
Greenhouse Capital (GHC) is a leading African fintech investment fund and platform focused on supporting early-stage companies and world-class Frontier market entrepreneurs building the next wave of innovative technology companies. Greenhouse Capital is Africa’s largest fintech fund by portfolio size and has invested in leading companies like Flutterwave, Max, and Pezesha. Greenhouse Capital has built a platform that nurtures companies with strategic business development, deep ecosystem networks, operational support from MVP too exit. It is home to Africa’s leading accelerator programs for women-led and fintech startups. Greenhouse Capital is using its experience, know-how, and track record to expand into Frontier markets, including the Middle East, where it will continue its approach of putting the entrepreneur first and empowering innovation while delivering returns.   

For further information, email: 

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