Fintech startup, NowNow Digital Systems in a bid to scale and expand its service offerings across Africa, has closed a $13 million seed round.
The round had NeoVision Ventures leading it with several other VCs and angels including DLF Family Office and Shadi Abdulhadi also participating.
The Nigerian startup intends to use the funds from the round to expand its platform, team, and marketing. The new funding plan will able be used to launch new products to complement its existing consumer banking, agency banking, and merchant payment solutions, in a bid to widen its customer base.
NowNow initially founded by Sahir Berry, its CEO, and his co-founder, Mahesh Nair, in 2016 to address financial inclusion and job creation, and by 2017 launched a mobile wallet to make its service seamless but after quickly discovering the need to build its own technology thoroughly rebranded, culminating in its 2018 market entry.
According to CEO Berry, NowNow is now an embedded finance platform with a complete financial ecosystem for agents, individual consumers, and small businesses.
The startup has its flagship product involving over 50,000 agents across Nigeria who provide users with financial services such as money transfers and bill payments. It also boasts of a consumer-facing product that gives people the leverage to send and receive money, pay bills, and access value-added services such as insurance and lending through an app-based debit card and wallet.
The service can be accessed by millions of users on their smartphones, with users on feature phones also included but they have to visit agents to access other services.
NowNow plans to stand out from other digital banking providers like Kuda, Carbon, FairMoney, with the mandate to differentiate itself from the competition with the development of near-field communication-enabled technology.
The platform is blessed with barrage of products within its ecosystem, with it having to enable tap-in functionality that allows users use virtual or physical cards against an NFC-enabled phone or POS and tap from wallet to wallet.
It is laced with a business-in-a-box platform with tools and value-added services like storefront and a marketplace to aid small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
The fintech startup is targeting its reach to about 5,000 SMEs by the end of this year, even as it claims to serve up to 200,000 customers and hopes to reach 1 million by December 2022.
NowNow is also planning to expand its reach to other African markets, notable among them, Angola and Liberia.