Announcing the VC4A Index and Fundraising Trends for Developers

VC4A releases first of its kind visual Index of venture finance data, powered by VC4A Trends—an industry leading source of open data—together with a free and open source developer toolkit.

As a leading platform in the African venture finance ecosystem, VC4A aggregates a vast amount of data. While thousands of organizations and individuals have gained valuable insights into this space through VC4A’s Research and Pro accounts, there remained a need for more open data to analyze larger finance trends across countries, sectors and financing stages. For example, consider these questions:

How much capital has been raised at the seed stage in Kenya’s internet sector?
How many Series A rounds have been closed in Nigeria’s renewable energy sector?
How much founder capital has been invested in South Africa to date?
What are the current financing trends in Ghana’s clean technology sector?

Until now, authoritative answers to these questions have remained elusive. The best estimates are often pieced together from disparate sources, outdated, or both.

Market leading data

With more than 10,000 registered ventures spanning the continent, and more being added every day, VC4A is the world’s largest single database of African startups. This puts us in a unique position to answer these and many other questions. As a first step, today we’re introducing the VC4A Index—an intuitive, highly visual, free service that allows anyone to explore SME financing trends across the continent. All the figures provided by the Index are based on up-to-the-minute, live data sourced directly from the VC4A platform.

This means that the results are dynamic and very likely to change from one day to the next. We aren’t aware of any other platform that provides these financing trends in real-time, at this scale, at no cost.

Open developer toolkit

The VC4A Index is powered by the VC4A API—a set of protocols used by developers to communicate with VC4A’s open data service. To better facilitate exploration of this rich dataset, we’ve recently added a new public API endpoint called Fundraising Trends. This data is freely available without the need to authenticate with the API. If you’re a developer, this means you don’t need to request an API key or create extra authentication routines in your client code.

The code behind the Index is available in a public repository on GitHub. The Index is implemented in pure JavaScript, so no server is needed to run it. If you’re a developer, feel free to download, fork or otherwise experiment with the new client and VC4A fundraising trends API endpoint. Join the VC4A API Google Group to ask questions and get support. Most of all, we look forward to seeing your innovative explorations of VC4A Fundraising Trends.

Final thoughts

For eleven years, VC4A has championed an effort to strengthen the African startup ecosystem by supporting entrepreneurs with free access to a world class platform. By using VC4A, entrepreneurs are able to showcase their work and share their ambitions with the world. Our shared vision is that as these entrepreneurs make themselves visible, the startup opportunities they develop become better understood and more accessible.

VC4A works closely with entrepreneurs to document their progress in the African startup space, and to make these trends and insights publicly available.