FrontEdge Raises $10M to Revolutionize African Cross-Border Trade for SMEs

FrontEdge, a Lagos-based digital trade-finance platform, has secured $10 million in debt and equity funding led by TLG Capital, alongside investors such as digital freight forwarder Flexport. This financial boost aims to empower SME exporters and importers across Africa, facilitating their growth and competitiveness in the global market.

Founder, Moni Alli highlighted the challenges faced by SMEs in accessing trade finance and support throughout the export process, emphasizing FrontEdge’s mission to address these barriers. The platform, established in 2021, offers a seamless technological solution, managing financing, logistics, insurance, foreign exchange, and cross-border payments for traders moving goods across borders.

Having observed the hurdles faced by SME exporters firsthand, Alli’s platform steps in to bridge working capital gaps by providing upfront cash based on transaction-based underwriting, without requiring collateral, unlike traditional banks. This approach accelerates financing and reduces the cost of serving SME exporters, enabling them to fulfill more orders and grow their businesses.

FrontEdge aims to become a comprehensive digital operating system for African traders, facilitating trade as a one-stop-shop that provides both working capital and essential software tools. The platform aspires to support sustainable development goals by empowering African entrepreneurs and ensuring sustainable sourcing practices while enhancing job creation.

With a vision to expand across the continent, FrontEdge has begun operations in West Africa, targeting a substantial opportunity in Africa’s $1.2 trillion annual international trade volumes. TLG Capital expressed pride in supporting FrontEdge’s mission, believing in its potential to solve critical issues for African traders and provide access to capital for exporters.

FrontEdge’s commitment aligns with UN Sustainable Development Goals, focusing on Increasing economic growth (Goal 8) and eradicating hunger (Goal 2) while empowering African entrepreneurs and promoting sustainable sourcing practices.