What Figma’s $25 million raise means for designers in Nigeria (& Africa)

Figma isn’t a Nigerian company, however the impact it’s having on the startup scene here means I have to share this news with everyone.

Described as “the open design company”, Figma’s online design tool has made life easy for millions of designers across the world, including our beloved Nigeria.

I’m not a designer but I can imagine what life was for Nigerian designers. Installing & setting up graphic software, collaborating with other designers on projects, showing designs to clients, et al. It must have been really tough!

Figma changed the game. Installation isn’t an issue as Figma is browser-based, and collaboration with designers is as easy as ABC (I experienced this first hand while interacting with the design mock-up for Fronstack’s Online Hackathon — all I had to do was sign in and I had access, together with others).

The growing number of Figma users in Nigeria led to the company holding its first design system meet up in Lagos few days ago with CEO Dylan Field flying in from Silicon Valley to attend. Isn’t that amazing??

While there weren’t much specifics in the funding announcement, I believe this raise will impact the passionate and vocal designers in Lagos, and Africa as a whole, as Figma will look to further help them achieve more with little effort.

I’ve replicated a part of the official press release below. Click the read more link after it to get the full presser.

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Figma, the open design platform, today announced a $25 million Series B funding round led by Kleiner Perkins. Previous investors Greylock and Index also participated. The company will use the new capital to fuel its ongoing growth in the enterprise.

Figma's mission is to make design accessible to anyone in the world. Over the past decade technology has made software easier and cheaper to develop and profoundly changed how consumers engage with digital experiences. Yet, the way these experiences are created has not kept pace.

As the only cloud-based tool for design, prototyping and collaboration, Figma offers a new way of achieving a shared understanding around design that results in great user experiences and happier teams. Since launching out of stealth in 2016, Figma simplified collaboration across the entire design process for thousands of companies and millions of users, including designers, developers, product manager, marketers and others.

Read more

i. While in Lagos, Dylan Field spoke with Guardian Newspaper on design systems, design trends and so on. Read more about the interview here.

ii. There’s this article on why Dylan came to Nigeria. You can find it here.