Financial service application Imalipay gets awarded $3M to provide and enable monetary services across Africa.
The company, which describes itself as a one-stop-shop financial services platform, has closed a $3 million seed in debt and equity round.
The fintech raised an $800,000 pre-seed round in 2020 after its launch by co-founders Tatenda Furusa and Oluwasanmi Akinmusire.
Furusa noticed drivers’ challenges with accessing working capital and emergency fuel and thus birth the idea.
“One time, a Bolt driver ran out of fuel in Nairobi when I was coming from the airport and couldn’t top off immediately.
It triggered me to think of what other pains these gig workers might be experiencing,” he said.
“We researched the gig economy and found that they were neglected by some financial services…”
Consequently, ImaliPay found its inspiration from BNPL products and adapted it to suit the needs of the SafeBoda business model.
The startup proceeded to create a partner ecosystem structured so that some give it access to new users while others support its ecosystem and marketplace.
“We built out other services around spare parts, smartphones, power banks, savings and investments, and insurance bundled with those products,” said Furusa.
“So like accident covers and income protection loss insurance, we intertwine these products so gig workers can qualify for each product based upon their transactional behavior.”
Meanwhile, the gig platforms are primarily responsible for the former.
It has 15 partners in this category, including Bolt, Glovo, SWVL, Amitruck, Safeboda, Gokada, and Max.ng.
But these types of businesses—such as fuel, mobile phones, parts, and other vendors—make up the bulk of gig workers’ needs.
Collectively, they are about 35 and some of them include Lami, Cowrywise, Ola Energy, Total Energies, HiFi Corporation, and Britam.
Imalipay offers these financial services to gig workers in this network by connecting its APIs to partner companies or directly via an independent app, chatbot, USSD.
In 15 months of operation, Imalipay’s userbase has grown by 60x, with over 200,00 transactions carried out monthly.
Even though the pan-African embedded finance provider’s revenues come from transaction and referral fees.
Last October, Google Black Founders funded the company before Leonnis Investments came in to help to close the seed round.
Additionally, Imalipay raised funding from Ten 13 Ventures, Uncovered Fund, Logos Ventures, Plug N Play Ventures, and others.
However, Imalipay has stated that all investment will go toward expanding the company’s workforce.
In conclusion, it would focus on improving its technology, and opening new markets in Ghana and Egypt.