Ozow, a South Africa-based payments company, has raised US$48 million in a Series B round of funding, according to a company announcement.
The round was led by Chinese Internet giant Tencent, along with participation from Endeavor Catalyst and Endeavor Harvest Fund.
Funding will be used to develop the company’s product suite and support expansion in new markets in Africa. This includes a focus on developing new products, as well as strategic investments, including mergers and acquisitions.
Further, Ozow is also looking to boost hiring at its Europe office, and commit funds to its expansion in Namibia, Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya over the next six months, TechCrunch reported.
Ozow is also focusing on working with regulators to promote open banking, including the national instant payment initiative Rapid Payment Programme (RPP).
Ozow is building for a “fragmented market”
Since its Series A round held in June 2019, Ozow has grown 100% year-on-year, an announcement from the company said. The company is seeing transaction volumes surpass US$100 million on a monthly basis, with a merchant network of “thousands” and over 120,000 new monthly users.
Ozow was started in 2014 by co-founders Thomas Pays, Mitchan Adams and Lyle Eckstein. The company provides a bank account-linked payments solution that works across different channels of payment, including QR codes, point of sale, ecommerce and e-billing. The company’s clients include names such as MTN, Vodacom and Uber.
“When you looked at e-commerce, point of sale, e-billing or P2P payment seven years ago, it was always a fragmented market. For example, if I want a point of sale device, I need to go to a company like Yoco. If I want to accept payments via card on my ecommerce site, I need to go to a PayU.
What we wanted to address was a central platform that could basically provide solutions to e-commerce, point of sale, e-billing and peer to peer payment,”
CEO Pays told TechCrunch.
The Series B takes the company’s total funding to US$51.7 million, according to the report. Of the US$48 million it raised, Tencent pitched in about US$20 million, the report also said.
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