Lalude Checks in from Africa

I was hoping for some info into the new VC funding round for Tudou.com, so sent an email over to Yemi Lalude, a principal at Tudou investor Granite Global Ventures. But I had forgot that Lalude no longer really works at GGVC, having left last summer to launch a new firm in Africa (see our original coverage). So instead of discussing online video sharing in China, we talked about funding opportunities in countries like Nigeria and South Africa.

Lalude’s new firm is called Adlevo Capital, and he splits his time between Lagos and Johannesburg. It has not yet held a close on its $75 million-targeted first fund, but expects to do so in either Q2 or Q3. An anchor investor – whose name Lalude did not disclose – has already committed capital to fund interim deals. For example, Adlevo expects to have its first term sheet signed within the next few days, for a telecom services company.

“Our strategy is looking at infrastructure plays that have tech-enabled business models,” says Lalude, who still serves on one of his old GGVC boards. “This isn’t the same early-stage, early-stage tech investing model that you see in Silicon Valley or Boston. It just doesn’t work as well here, as we saw when some people tried in South Africa… Every now and then you might get a great deal, but the most promising companies here are ones that focus on expanding the accessibility of existing technologies – not those coming up with new cutting-edge technologies.”

Lalude did not identify other members of his team, except to say that his two partners have strong operating and financial experience. He also plans to add two or three associates over the next year.