Grindstone and Anza unite to host ‘African showcase’

Written by: Ivor Price.

Two prominent early-stage venture capital firms, Grindstone Ventures and Anza Capital, have joined forces to curate a week-long series of events aimed at putting Cape Town’s vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem in the spotlight for both local and global Limited Partners (LPs).

In a rapidly evolving global venture capital market, poised to reach a staggering $1 068.5 billion by 2031, emerging fund managers, especially those operating in emerging markets, are grappling with unprecedented challenges. The event, aptly named “An African showcase: Early-stage investment VC-LP Connect,” is set to provide a platform for LPs and VCs to confront these challenges head-on.

Catherine Young, Managing Partner of Grindstone Ventures, expressed her anticipation ahead of the event, stating, “We eagerly anticipate reconnecting with our supporters, founders, and investors as we continue to bridge innovation and investment in the ever-evolving entrepreneurial landscape. Our start-ups are at the heart of our mission, and this week is dedicated to celebrating them and ushering in new paradigms.”

Audrey Verhaeghe, CEO of Anza Capital, added, “South Africa’s investment value chain requires early-stage intervention. Without early investments in start-ups addressing real economic needs, many promising ventures may not survive. It’s imperative to tackle this challenge through public-private partnerships, attracting the capital needed to nurture talent and drive industrialization.”

Anza Capital wine tasting & dinner

Anza Capital will kick off the festivities with a welcome dinner and wine tasting event on Monday, 25 September 2023.

This gathering promises a setting where seasoned fund managers and emerging trailblazers come together to deliberate on the future of investment in Africa. The theme, “Old roots, new vines,” encapsulates the fusion of traditional wisdom and fresh perspectives.

Grindstone Venture Dash

Grindstone Ventures is adding a thrilling twist to the traditional Amazing race. On Tuesday, 26 September, LPs and funders will embark on a dash across Cape Town’s iconic V&A Waterfront, deciphering clues and taking on challenges while unearthing Grindstone’s start-ups. The Venture Dash concludes with a leisurely cruise around the V&A Waterfront, fostering networking opportunities.

SAIS 2023

The South African Innovation Summit (SAIS 2023), a continent-wide start-up extravaganza, is devoted to championing global tech entrepreneurs with a local perspective. The event on Wednesday, 27 and Thursday, 28 September boasts panel discussions, pitching showdowns, brainstorming sessions, masterclasses, plenaries, and more. It welcomes founders, entrepreneurs, thought leaders, and businesses invested in amplifying innovations that drive the African Innovation Frontier.

Cultivating growth in LP-VC landscape

Grindstone Ventures will host an exclusive roundtable discussion aimed at bridging the divide between LPs and VCs in Africa on Wednesday, 27 September 2023.

Topics of discussion will span the spectrum of early-stage VC funding challenges, from addressing the hurdles faced by capital providers and VC builders to unlocking funding opportunities, understanding VC structures, strategizing exits, and gauging investor sentiments.

Grindstone Ventures & Anza Capital portfolio showcase

The Portfolio Showcase, also on 27 September 2023, is open to all SAIS 2023 attendees. It is an avenue for selected start-ups from Grindstone Ventures and Anza Capital to pitch their ventures. The roster features promising start-ups such as Locstat, WISI-Oi Marketplace, LocumBase, AgriLogiQ, Impulse Biomedical, NewForm Foods, and TAILORBLEND.

Farewell event

The week concludes with an intimate farewell event, tailored to the preferences of the LPs. Against the backdrop of Cape Town’s natural splendour, guests will have the opportunity to reflect on their experiences, glean insights, and forge lasting connections.

The collaborative efforts of Grindstone Ventures and Anza Capital are poised to serve as a potent catalyst for innovation and investment in Cape Town’s thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. “An African showcase” presents a unique opportunity for networking, collaboration, and problem-solving that could drive growth and prosperity within Africa’s start-up landscape.

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