A Paris-based fintech, FairMoney has just secured the sum of 10 million euros in seed funding to widen the company’s online lending services to more customers with the aim of becoming a holistic financial platform for underserved customers, in Nigeria.
The funds were raised in a Series A round of investment led by Flourish, a venture of The Omidyar Group, the partners of DST Global, and existing seed investors, Newfund, Speedinvest, and Le Studio VC.
The Details: The funds will be pumped into the company’s technical team to develop a platform that will fuel its dream of becoming a fully-fledged mobile banking platform in Nigeria and beyond.
Laurin Hainy, CEO of FairMoney said the company would continue to innovate its offerings in order to transform to a FinTech that not only lends money but provides a lot of financial services.
“Our vision is to build a holistic financial platform for underserved customers in emerging markets. We want to do that by offering an easy-to-use product to our customers and become a financial one-stop-shop for them. We started with credit for small business owners and individuals, and we are expanding our services rapidly. Think digital bank for emerging market consumers.”
FairMoney’s Approach: The technology Fairmoney uses in underwriting credit is based on a proprietary algorithm that adopts machine learning techniques to smartphone data. The average loans are 30 Euros and customers can grow their loan limits up to 400 Euros over time by showing good repayment habits.
“After backing digital banks in the US, UK, Latin America and South Asia, we are excited to support one of the first companies to bring this model to Africa. We believe that customers will ask a lot more of their banks–to be relevant, banks will have to move from service providers to become financial mentors for their customers.
“That’s where we see a massive global opportunity for FairMoney, which combines a top-notch banking infrastructure with a culture of obsessive customer focus,” Ameya Upadhyay, a principal at Flourish and FairMoney’s new board member stated.
Launched in 2017, FairMoney started as a mobile app that uses alternative smartphone data to underwrite microcredit in Nigeria. FairMoney is a licensed online lender, that provides instant loans to meet up urgent cash needs.
FairMoney claims to have more than 200,000 customers who use the mobile app, with a majority using the platform to finance their small business needs. FairMoney also introduced the in-app payment function to its users, which allows them to top up their phone subscriptions, buy mobile data, pay electricity or internet bills, among others, already facilitating more than 400 payments daily. Other features, such as digital wallet and saving account are scheduled to launch soon.