Moroccan Fintech, Chari Acquires Ivorian e-Commerce Startup Diago

Chari, a Moroccan B2B fintech startup and e-commerce platform, announced it had acquired a 100 percent stake in Diago. Diago is an Ivorian app which connects local shops to FMCG importers and producers.

The all-stock deal was facilitated by AF Legal, RBB International and Houda Law Firm representing Chari and the Ivorian start-up.

This acquisition is coming only 3 months after Chari acquired Axa Credit, the credit arm of Axa Assurance Maroc, for $22 million. Chari announced three successful acquisitions with Karny, the bookkeeping app that it bought last August.

“The secret of a successful expansion is to build a local team that masters local market dynamics,” said Chari’s CEO Ismail Belkhayat who co-founded the startup with his wife Sophia Alj (COO) in 2020. “The real challenge is to convince local entrepreneurs to join forces with Chari to grow faster.”

Belkhayat said last year that it aims to be the market leader for francophone Africa in an interview. Today it makes its first major foray and vouches to “continue to surround ourselves with young and ambitious entrepreneurs from francophone Africa to build together a pan-African giant of FMCG and financial services distribution.”

Founded in 2021 by Ali Ouattara and Amidou Diarra, two former managers at Glovo and PepsiCo, Diago operates exclusively in Abidjan, the capital city of Côte d’Ivoire and one of the biggest French-speaking cities in Africa.

Chari stated in a statement, that Ouattara, and Diarra, who initially sought funding, market and tech advice before choosing to leave to the Moroccan, would remain CEO and COO. The duo will oversee local business growth before expanding its footprint to other Sub-Saharan countries—Chari’s overarching goal.

“Diago’s entire team will receive Chari’s full support functions,” said Chari’s VP of international expansion Cyrille Jacques. “Chari’s Casablanca back office will help the Diago team in setting up operations, IT tools, and customer service.

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