Bizao, a fintech that facilitates payments for both local and international businesses operating in Africa, announces an €8 million series A funding to accelerate its geographical footprint across the continent and invest in the design of new lines of products and services.
- Since 2019, Bizao has secured, in 10 African countries, over 30 partnerships with telco operators, banks, and mobile money service providers. This geographical coverage has enabled Bizao’s team to build, over time, a unique payment hub which allows businesses in West and Central Africa to accept credit cards payments along with mobile money and airtime as payment means.
- Now providing a coverage of 200 million end-customers, Bizao already supports around 100 companies in the digital transformation of their online and in-store payment transactions.
- With this funding, Bizao will scale the commercialization of its payment hub and expand its operations to new countries.
- The new investors strengthen Bizao’s governance while consolidating the R&D strategy aimed at designing innovative payment products and services to address the needs identified across news business lines
Launched in 2019, Bizao facilitates, in a transparent and secure manner, the processing of end to-end payment flows to and from the main digital payment systems in Africa (airtime, mobile money wallets, credit card).
Within 3 years, Bizao has expanded its operations in 10 African countries (Burkina-Faso, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Tunisia, Togo, Gabon) and has built a robust and cutting-edge infrastructure that processes over 350 million payment requests per month.
Bizao’s modular and scalable platform allows clients to collect and issue payments online and in-stores via point-of-sale (POS).
The technology used by Bizao ensures end-to-end transactions traceability and is hence, up to the latest standards of banking and finance regulation to prevent fraud and money laundering. This, ultimately, enables Bizao to deepen its relationship with its partners.
“We have spent the last few years working closely with our partners (telecoms operators, banks and mobile wallet providers) to improve our products and services in line with our customer requirements. Thanks to this close collaboration with industry players, we have multiplied the transaction volumes processed by our platform by almost 20 over the past 12 months. This round of financing will enable us to design new product lines for high-potential vertically integrated organisations, expand in new markets and grow the team across all our offices” said Aurélien Delort-Duval, Founder and CEO of Bizao.
The founding round was led by:
– AfricInvest Financial Inclusion Vehicle (AfricInvest FIVE), a leading private equity company with operations in Africa
– Adelie, a multi-stage venture capital fund focused on technology companies – Seedstars Africa Ventures, an Africa focused early-stage venture capital fund
“Through our equity investments in financial institutions including banks, insurance companies and high potential fintechs, we support the acceleration of universal access to financial services. Our investment in Bizao is in line with this high-impact strategy aiming to support financial inclusion in Africa.” said Omar Bekkali, Partner at AfricInvest.
“It is the future of financial services that is orchestrating itself in Africa; mobile money has enabled more than 60% of the population on the continent to finally have access to basic financial services. The penetration rate of mobile on the continent is close to 100% and we are witnessing a growth in the use of credit cards. We are convinced that a platform combining all these payment methods has an exceptional growth potential.” said Jean-Manuel Costa, Managing Partner at Adelie
“With more than 600 million mobile money accounts, Africa is the ultimate place for mobile payments. Yet 90% of transactions are still settled in cash. Bizao tackles a major societal issue
and can help unlock African trade potential. To achieve this goal, Bizao leverages its payment Hub which is one of the most technically robust. In addition, Bizao’s African internationalization strategy matches that of the companies we support” said Tamim El Zein, Partner at Seedstars Africa Ventures.