Bamba is a boutique data collection agency that specializes in innovative solutions for rapidly gathering cost-effective and high-quality consumer insights from emerging markets that can be otherwise challenging to reach
African data collection startup Bamba has announced today that it has closed its first seed investment round after raising US$1.1 million (Kes. 110 million) in investment funds, making it one of the largest and most successful seed rounds completed by an East African startup.
At closing, Bamba is proud to have a global investor base that spans Silicon Valley, New York, Washington DC, Austin, London and many regions throughout Africa.
Bamba is a boutique data collection agency that specializes in innovative solutions for rapidly gathering cost-effective and high-quality consumer insights from emerging markets that can be otherwise challenging to reach.
One such solution is Bamba’s unique tool that allows the building of highly targeted and responsive panels for data collection.
The versatility and effectiveness of Bamba’s offerings have resulted in numerous high-profile clients, such as Kantar, the Aga Khan Foundation, and IPSOS.
“Bamba has made it possible to deliver panel-based projects a lot faster by providing access to highly targeted respondents,” says Arnold Nyakundi of IPSOS Kenya.
“Since then, we’ve further expanded to employ 21 full-time staff, along with numerous other field consultants around the world. It’s incredible; we’ve established a global reach, spanning Canada, US, UK, Uganda, Tanzania, South Africa and Nigeria. This is in large part thanks to ongoing support from our investors,” says Al Ismaili, co-founder and CEO.
Bamba’s success in attracting investors was the result of a number of factors that created a perfect storm. First, in the past several years, consumers in emerging markets have become more engaged and connected through widespread adoption of smartphone or feature phone technology, presenting the opportunity to finally tap into the wants, needs, and opinions of these consumers for companies agile and innovative enough to build the right tools.
Second, investors have become increasingly interested in opportunities to invest in the African market in recent years, and accelerator programs have stepped up by accepting greater numbers of African startups into their mentorship programs.
Finally, Bamba was itself accepted into the prestigious TechStars accelerator program in 2016, where they gained access to a well-established network that provided them with business development mentorship, customer acquisition, capital, talent recruitment, as well as a sizable initial financial investment as part of the accelerator program.
Having achieved its investment goal for the first seed round, Bamba now looks to the future with plans to put the US$1.1 million towards developing new innovative data collection solutions, supporting a larger number of clients, and expanding its team and geographical reach.
Of course, this will all be done while continuing to lend a voice to people in emerging markets so that they can play a bigger role in shaping their world.
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