- Naspers has shut down its South Africa-focused technology investment fund, Foundry.
- The fund valued at R1.4 billion ($77 million) has only been deployed halfway — R740 million $40 million.
- Naspers will, however, maintain the investment it has already made in startups.
Naspers is one of the largest companies in Africa, with a market cap of R1.3 trillion ($71.3 billion). It is a media and global Internet group that invests in technology companies.
Its South Africa-focused investment fund, Foundry, was launched to invest in early-stage startups across South Africa.
Today, March 13, 2023, BusinessDay reports that Naspers has shut the R1.4 billion (~$77 million) fund to slim its operations as venture capital takes a hit globally.
A Naspers spokesperson told BusinessDay, "The global investment environment, as well as the local SA one, has changed, and we have made clear the need for our business to adapt."
"In line with changes across the wider business, we have reviewed our early-stage investment strategy within SA to bring it in line with our international approach. Naspers will continue to support the development of SA's early-stage tech sector, assessing the market and new opportunities in a way that is consistent with our other global markets."
Per TechCabal, the fund, which launched in 2014, has only been deployed halfway. Naspers was part of Planet42's $100 million mega-round in February 2023, Naked's $17 million in 2023, and WhereIsMyTransport's $14 million in 2021.
The news of Naspers Foundry shutdown is coming a few weeks after Naspers revealed its plan to reduce its workforce by 30%. With one of South Africa's largest funds shutting down, SA's early-stage startup might see a funding slowdown in 2023.
Featured image source: Ventureburn