While Nigeria and Kenya have been at the forefront of African fintech innovation, activities in Egypt are starting to take shape well. Currently, Egypt is home to a thriving ecosystem of fintech startups and today fintech startup Paymob announced that it has completed an $ 18.5 million Series A round..
In July 2020, Paymob raised $ 3.5 million as part of its first round of Series A investment. A Additional $ 15 million was raised from the same investors in the first tranche led by Global Ventures, a Dubai-based venture capital firm. Other investors include Egyptian investment fund A15 and Dutch development bank FMO.
Total raise of $ 18.5 million is Egypt’s largest Series A round to date and one of the largest series of shares in North Africa.
“We are delighted to lead this major fintech fundraiser in the region. Paymob has a perfect combination of high-quality technology, product customers more and more can not do without and an outstanding management team. Their market opportunity is also huge; Egypt’s transformation into a cashless society is made possible by the unique products that Paymob has built, ”said Basil Moftah, Managing Partner of Global Ventures of the investment..
Paymob Was found in 2015 by Alain El Hajj, Islam Shawky and Mostafa El Menessy. The platform helps online and offline merchants accept payments from their customers through multiple products and solutions. It offers a payment gateway that merchants can plug into their sites or mobile applications using its APIs.. For offline merchants, Paymob has a point of sale solution where they can receive card payments in store.
The company also has a payment links feature where merchants share links with their customers to receive payments that are received using mobile wallets. And according to the company, 85% of mobile wallet transactions made in Egypt is processed by its infrastructure. He also claims to be the country’s biggest payment facilitator.
Besides Egypt, Paymob is also present in Kenya, Pakistan and Palestine. CEO Shawky said the company plans to expand to more countries in sub-Saharan Africa, However, this will come after focusing on the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) where he hopes to gain significant market share.
Regional expansion (with imminent entry into Saudi Arabia) is one of Paymob’s goals following this increase for this year. According to a statement released by the company, it will also use the investments to expand its network of merchants, meet growing demand and improve its product offerings..
The pandemic has presented one of the best opportunities for fintechs around the world to achieve massive growth. Paymob claims to have multiplied its monthly turnover by 5 last year. The company has also recorded a total payment volume of over $ 5 billion from over 35,000 local and international merchants such as Swvl, LG, Breadfast, Tradeline, among others..
It is even this growth that allowed fintech to raise the second tranche of investment after closing. fair $ 3.5 million initially. According to CEO Shawky, the deal came to fruition after investors and company management witnessed an “unprecedented growth” driven by the pandemic.
As previously reported, fintech is on the rise in Egypt with startups like Moneyfellows, NowPay, Raseedi, Flick providing lending, payments, wealth management and personal finance services, etc..
The Egyptian fintech ecosystem also received a major boost when historic fintech Fawry first became a publicly traded unicorn.. Since its launch in 2007, Fawry has been the country’s largest online payment platform and offers a variety of services ranging from mobile wallets to banking services.. Does Fawry’s long-standing presence pose a challenge to Paymob’s quest to become a dominant fintech as well?? Shawky doesn’t think so.
“Paymob’s main competitor is cash. With only a small percentage of the economy operating in digital forms, we believe the opportunity to really turning cash into digital has not yet been be unlocked,” he said.
That said, the increase follows the launch of two funds – Algebra Ventures and Sawri Ventures in what can be described as an exciting week for startups and VCs nationwide.