The fund targets “late stage venture and growth companies, predominantly in mature markets, developing online and mobile applications and services targeted at the rapidly expanding middle classes in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America”.
The fourth round of funding for Amadeus raised US$75 million, with MTN’s contribution being described as the “cornerstone”.
Karel Pienaar, group chief strategy and M&A officer of MTN, added: “This investment in Amadeus’ new Fund will give us exposure to a range of opportunities in online and mobile applications and services relevant to the needs of the emerging middle class of consumer.
“Investment in companies that focus on those technologies that leap-frog current applications fits well with MTN’s focus of driving sustainable growth through data services and related opportunities.”
It is predicted that by the end of the decade the combined GDP of the world’s developing economies will have overtaken the combined economies of the US and Europe.
Four African countries are among the 19 identified by the fund as being ripe for investment opportunities. They are South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria and Kenya.
As part of their investment MTN will gain a presence on the Amadeus Strategic Advisory Board which will assist portfolio companies in taking their products to the market.
Anne Glover, Amadeus chief executive officer (CEO), said: “We are delighted to have found in MTN a corporate partner who is knowledgeable, well-connected and at the forefront of innovation in developing markets and we look forward to this partnership attracting the best entrepreneurs in the space, to create globally successful businesses.”