Co-founder and CEO of the shipping logistics company Jetstream Africa, Miishe Addy launched the business after discovering numerous prospects in the shipping sector while serving as a teaching fellow for an NGO in Ghana in 2017.
She gained notoriety in January of this year when she raised $13 million in pre-Series-A stock and loans for her firm. Participating in the funding round were the French development organization PROPARCO through the Digital Africa Bridge Fund, the Nigerian venture capital fund Octerra, the Senegal’s Wuri Ventures, the MBA Fund, the W Fund, and family offices. ASC VC was founded by executives of the supply chain visibility platform Project44.
Investors like Alitheia, IDF, and Golden Palm also participated in the equity round, while fintech lender Cauris was the sole investor in the debt round. Speaking to Techcabal, Addy explained that investors were selected due to experience in the sector.
“All of our major investors have investment or operational experience with the problem we’re solving. They are specialists in supply chain technology like ASCVC, which was founded by Project44 executives, or African value chain and logistics portfolio companies like Alitheia, Golden Palm, Octerra, Wuri, and Proparco,” she said.
Miishe Addy’s background and her interest in global the supply chain
Although Addy’s family is from Ghana, as was previously mentioned, she was born in the United States, raised in Texas, and earned her first degree from esteemed Harvard University. She discovered a problem in the global supply chain while she was in Ghana and came up with a solution by fusing technology and human abilities.
Many small and medium-sized enterprises in Africa struggle with the documentation, procedures, and financial outlay required to move their goods across international boundaries. Jetstream Africa aims to use technology to give African companies control over their global supply chains.
Due to their profitability and access to well-known clients, logistics startups are regarded as a “third wave” of Africa’s tech revolution. The sector is anticipated to become even more lucrative once the Continental Free Trade Agreement is fully implemented.
According to Addy, the logistics industry is crucial to the development of Africa, and this is the ideal time to enter it through Jetstream.
“Most businesses in Africa make and sell physical things, and you can’t sell what you can’t move. So logistics is really a centerpiece of the entire commerce equation,” Addy emphasized at a virtual Africa Tech Summit Connects.
“We’ve seen so much momentum in the fintech world, and there are so many e-commerce websites that are coming up to allow SMEs and everyone else to sell products, but it is the people who are running the cargo on the ground who are solving one of the trickiest bottlenecks.”
Jetstream helps shippers to import or export goods from Ghana and Nigeria, and also developed a digital platform that helps shippers to pay for and track their cargo.
After three years in business, it has grown to become a well-known name in the shipping sector. Addy has found success by trusting her gut.
In an interview with CNN, she expressed her satisfaction at the fact that her profession as a software entrepreneur is both enjoyable and having an impact. Although COVID-19 has had an impact on enterprises all around the world, particularly the supply chain, Jetstream has benefited from the digitization of its operations. In 2020, her company, according to Addy, increased both its revenue and clientele.
Addy draws inspiration from both of her parents: her mom is an economist who provides advice to Ghanaian manufacturing and logistics firms, and her dad is an inventor, investor, and entrepreneur who is recognized with creating a ground-breaking sterilization device for Johnson & Johnson in the 1990s.
Addy gave advice to aspiring young entrepreneurs, saying that a knack for problem-solving is essential. The greatest moment to start a business is now, she continued, so they shouldn’t wait till later.