January 7, 2017

Our approach

The team currently focuses on investing in early stage businesses with strong founders, working on exciting business ideas with huge market potential.  

Our goal is to build a healthy portfolio of strong and sustainable African businesses that operate with integrity and deliver exceptional returns to all key stakeholders.

Our preference is for products and services that contribute to the reduction in trade deficit, provide employment (without sacrificing efficiency) and can easily scale across borders.

Methodology and modus operandi

We utilize the TOPSCAN approach, providing our investee companies with the requisite human, social and financial capital to successfully complete idea validation, business model development, market access/distribution and scaling.  By TOPSCAN, we mean:

  • Team building
  • Operations
  • Perspective
  • Skills development
  • Customer development
  • Analysis
  • Network

The combination of support offered depends on the kind of company, stage of growth and complexity of business model.   We either invest in existing businesses or create businesses from scratch (company builder model).

Pipeline development

We have been successful using a cohort and a curriculum based approach to attracting talent and making investment decisions.  For portfolio management and growth however, we use more of a customized approach for each early stage business.

Investments

ServLed invests heavily in our cohorts by providing human, social and financial capital.  All three components are essential to achieve successful/desired outcomes.

Our team of mentors and business development specialists work closely with all our investee companies to ensure that they are on the right track at all times.  These interventions minimize the chances of early stage failure.

ServLed also makes small investments of $5K to $100K in the form of risk capital or debt (or a combination of both) directly or through its network of investors.  ServLed currently has a small but active (and growing) community of local and international angel investors, family offices and foundations who are committed to supporting early stage investments in our markets.

Sectors

While ServLed is open to businesses in agribusiness, education, healthcare and technology enabled businesses, our current mandate is primarily to invest in light manufacturing companies.  These companies can fall in any of the other four sectors or other sectors.

Exits

Our goal is to create maximum value for founders and all investors, as well as significant impact for communities served.  We therefore structure our investments to provide win-win-win scenarios in all cases.

ServLed uses creative approaches to counter the ‘illiquidity’ of early stage investments in this part of the world.  These approaches ensure that capital is optimally deployed and profitably recovered within timelines acceptable to ServLed and its investors.