Releaf, a big data web platform for private businesses in Nigeria, announced plans to raise $40,000 on crowdfunding platform, Indiegogo so its founder can setup operations in Nigeria and scale more rapidly.
Launched by students at MIT, Yale, and Duke who have worked for Facebook, Bain, and Microsoft, Releaf offers international investors access to detailed data on private Nigerian businesses and apples-to-apples investment assessment thanks to their investor-vetted rating algorithm. The team’s web platform serves as a talent scout for investments in Nigeria’s agricultural sector, allowing investors to identify opportunities and deploy capital faster than previously possible.
Because 85% of small and medium scale agribusinesses cannot access the capital they need to grow, Releaf is piloting their solution with 3 social impact investment funds, assisting their investment search processes. Already, these investors can sift through more than 300 company datasets and identify candidates that meet their growth and social impact targets rather than relying on coincidental introductions and google searches.
Isaiah Udotong, CEO, explains: “Nigeria needs a meritocratic platform that allows foreign investors to quickly parse through accurate data on well-run African companies so they can invest more quickly and confidently. Releaf aims to do just that.”
Releaf is currently forced to outsource local due diligence services to contractors who add unnecessary costs and reduce quality. Following a successful fundraising campaign, the founders will forgo full-time opportunities at Facebook, Bain, and Microsoft to establish a local office in Lagos, Nigeria. They plan to expand their services, hiring 2 on-ground due diligence staffers in the next 6 months.