Malaik the Hausa, Swahili, and Arabic words for ‘Angel’ is also an impact focused equity crowdfunding platform allowing accredited investors co-invest in high impact African businesses along with experienced lead investors.
“We wanted a word that would resonate through the key African regions while also representing Malaik’s core aim of funding African SME”, Neku Atawodi founder of Malaik shares with Appsafrica.com.
Malaik focuses on companies that provide an impact with measurable metrics, using a combination of the SDGs and IRIS metrics to create measurable goals that entrepreneurs who are successfully funded via the platform can use to report their progress in achieving these goals to their crowd of investors
Companies listed on the platform have gone through a four step due diligence process by a team of financial experts, jurisdiction lawyers, corporate structure experts, and compliance directors adds Atawodi.
Having launched in November 2015, “Malaik was actually motivated by the struggles I faced trying to access finance for the Beach Polo + bar project. We internally invested about 70% of the build cost, and wanted to spread risk by taking an SME loan. 29% interest rate! It got me thinking about all the SME’s with brimming potential to help answer some of Africa’s pressing problems that either cannot access a loan, or get killed before they even get off the ground at such high interest rates. I had just come off stumbling on a file tracking tech solution, and my sister was heading Uber, so my head was very much in the ‘how can technology answer problems.”
Since launching, Malaik has been able to fully fund its first startup, i-Drop Water with over a quarter of a million dollars in funding.
“trade not aid”
I started thinking about the possibilities of buying shares in companies when the crowd pulls together and funds a project, as opposed to just donating money, “trade not aid” is Africa’s narrative. As the narrative for “trade not aid” continues to grow in Africa, more and more small scale donor money will look to impact investment opportunities And so Malaik was born.
With impact investing ensuring that value is measured in more than just financial returns, more impact investments will be made as a route to answer some of Africa’s pressing problems.