A New Way Forward for Venture in Africa
Venture in Africa is often misaligned as a cut-and-paste strategy from traditional venture capital models. That changes now.
Kinyungu Ventures is an East African venture advisory firm journeying with mission-driven entrepreneurs growing resilient businesses to unlock intergenerational wealth in local communities. Based in Nairobi and Chicago, Kinyungu Ventures strives to do three things well.
- Context: Provide wisdom in crucial moments
- Connects: Leverage trusted relationships
- Capital: Invest in great businesses
We are crazy enough to invest in early ventures & SMEs Friends and family can only get you so far, while VCs and banks see you as too risky. This infamous “missing middle” of investing $50-500k is our sweet spot.
Unicorns are cool, but we love zebras Many great small businesses don’t fit the typical VC profile, but have tremendous unfulfilled potential and are the engine of East Africa’s economy.
We don’t just write checks, we go on the journey with you We’ve been in your shoes. So, we know first hand the value of the right people, the right advice, at the right time.
Trusted Relationships The best ideas are not within us, but between us. The most meaningful problems are solved by epic teams. So, we partner and disagree together well.
Generous Stewardship Everything we have has been given to us and meant to be stewarded to bless others.
Servant Leadership The greatest leaders are servants, equipping their people to surpass them. We serve others - our partners, employees, customers, communities - best through listening and modeling growth.
Enduring Culture We are known by the ecosystem more for our culture than for our investments. As more entrepreneurs join the family, we all mutually benefit, leveraging our collective strengths.
About the Founder
Living three years in Kenya with his family, Tony Chen was given the nickname “Kinyungu” by a Kenyan mama. Now the namesake of the company, Kinyungu is a reminder to generously live out the core beliefs above. He is often seen meeting entrepreneurs one-on-one at Ankole Grille and has invested in 15 ventures based in Nairobi.
He is Co-Founder of Govzilla, a SaaS company he led as CEO for 8 years. Tony is also on the Investment Committee for Triphammer Ventures. His first company, Hospital Impact, was acquired in 2009. Prior to his start-up days, Tony worked 10 years in various corporate, innovation, and business development roles. Tony earned a BS in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University and an MBA from Northwestern Kellogg School of Management.