Appzone has announced the close of its $10mn Series A round funding, in an effort to bolster investment in its core technologies and kick off a wave of new country expansions.
CardinalStone Capital Advisers lead funding with participation from V8 Capital, Lateral Investment Partners, Constant Capital, and Itanna Capital Ventures to build the company’s Operating System for Africa’s financial services industry, which is intended to completely digitise and automate the delivery of financial services on the continent.
“We’re excited not only to be securing a significant capital raise but also welcoming on board some strategic investors whose support will be key to our growth journey. Today’s news allows us to scale Appzone’s products and services rapidly. For the last 12 years, we’ve worked in stealth mode, building the really complex infrastructure to power the continent’s growing digital financial services space and forging partnerships with the continent’s biggest financial institutions,” announced Appzone’s Co-Founder and CEO Obi Emetarom.
Meanwhile, the Managing Director of Cardinal Stone Capital Advisers, Yomi Jemibewon has said the investment in Appzone is further proof of Africa’s potential as the future hub of world-class technology.
He stated that Appzone is building a disruptive FinTech ecosystem that will be the backbone of Africa’s finance industry with products across payments, infrastructure and Software as a Service.
“The impact of Appzone’s work is multifold – the company’s products deepen financial inclusion across the continent whilst providing best-fit and low-cost solutions to financial institutions. Its emphasis on premium talent also helps stem brain drain, rewarding Africa’s best brains with best-in-class employment opportunities,” Jemibewon added.
Launched in 2008, Appzone delivers best-in-class products for digital core banking and interbank transaction processing with clients across seven African countries including high-profile names like Access Bank, GT Bank and Zenith Bank. Since its inception, the company, also an alumnus of the Google launchpad accelerator, has led Africa’s fintech sector through radical innovation that resulted in a number of global firsts from the continent, including the world’s first decentralised payment processing network, the first core banking and omnichannel software on the cloud and the first multi-bank direct debit service based on single global mandates. To date, the company’s platforms have served 18 commercial banks and over 450 microfinance banks, amassing a yearly transaction value and yearly loan disbursement of $2bn and $300mn respectively.
As Africa’s traditional banks and fintech startups grapple with the increasing threat from telco companies and big tech players, Appzone’s products effectively and affordably equip them to deal with the sector’s most pressing challenges including legacy cost structures and a major lack of operational efficiency. Currently, due to a severe dearth of high-quality localised solutions that address these problems, traditional and challenger banks in Africa are limited to using foreign technology solutions tailored for Western markets – many of which are plagued with the huge stumbling blocks of prohibitive pricing, insufficient flexibility to innovate and a lack of local tech support.