FairMoney raises €10m to build challenger bank in Nigeria
Digital banking start-up FairMoney has raised €10 million in its Series A investment round, accelerating its project to build a new digital bank in Nigeria.
The round was led by The Omidyar Group’s venture Flourish, DST Global partners and existing seed investors Newfund, Speedinvest and Le Studio VC.
Beginning as a micro-credit offering three years ago, FairMoney now has more than 200,000 customers, the majority of which are small businesses.
Having already secured a licence to lend in Nigeria and created an in-app payment function which can top up phone subscriptions, buy mobile data and pay electricity or internet bills, the soon-to-be neobank is now working on a digital wallet and savings account.
“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,” says Flourish principal and new FairMoney board member, Ameya Upadhyay.
He adds: “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.”
FairMoney’s CEO Laurin Hainy wants to see the fintech become a “one-stop-shop” for mobile banking. “Think digital bank for emerging market consumers,” says Hainy.