The African Group, a Nigerian AI startup, is on a roll. They’ve recently secured a $100 million bridge round and raised $3 million in pre-Series A funding. They’re also taking the helm of a new startup called Fin, which aims to be the ultimate financial inclusion platform.
Finclusion Group rebrands to Fin
The Finclusion Group has rebranded to become “Fin.” This new name reflects its ambition to become one of the leading international neobanks in Eastern and Southern Africa. It also highlights its commitment to strengthening financial inclusion in Africa.
Fin offers a wide range of products that can benefit consumers, employers, and microfinance banks. These products include loans, cards, payroll loans, insurance, and more.
Fin’s mission is to improve the quality of life for its customers. Their solutions provide simple, accessible, and convenient banking options, and are tailored to their needs. They have a strong presence in Kenya, where they offer credit-centric products and services.
Financial inclusion has become a focus of governments and private investors around the world. In addition, non-governmental organizations are also expanding their efforts to boost financial inclusion. Among the organizations are the Alliance for Financial Inclusion and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
While the Alliance for Financial Inclusion promotes evidence-based policy solutions, IFC also helps strengthen institutions in order to facilitate economic growth. Through its Financial Institutions Group, IFC invests in the financial services sector in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Lori raises $3 million pre-Series A round
Lori Systems is an on-demand logistics company that digitizes haulage operations. The startup provides solutions for cargo owners and transporters to streamline transportation and cargo management processes. It has a base in Nairobi, Kenya, and is expanding to Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda, and South Sudan.
In 2017, Lori Systems won the maiden edition of Techcrunch Startup Battlefield Africa. They beat out 14 other contestants to win the prize of $25,000 USD. Later, they went on to raise an undisclosed amount in a pre-Series A round.
Their new fundraising will enable them to develop and enhance their existing technology and executive team. As well, the company will use the funds to launch new products.
Lori is focused on building a cutting-edge logistics infrastructure in Africa. Their goal is to improve access to capital and improve efficiency in the freight and shipping industry.
Lori’s mission is to create an on-demand, digitized, multi-modal transportation network to help shippers, carriers, and logistics companies make the most of their resources. Since its inception, the company has helped thousands of cargo owners and carriers move goods throughout the continent.
Chari secures $100 million bridge round
The Moroccan B2B e-commerce startup Chari has secured a bridge round of funding worth $100 million. This is the first time in Morocco that the company has secured such funding. Founded in 2020 by husband and wife team Ismael Belkhayat and Sophia Alj, the company provides financial services for retail stores. It has also launched operations in Tunisia.
Chari aims to connect retailers with suppliers and consumers, and to offer payment options. It also plans to expand into Tunisia and other French-speaking countries in Africa. In addition to its financial services, Chari also uses information to determine the creditworthiness of unbanked shop owners.
According to the company’s founders, Chari is on a mission to help entrepreneurs. With focus on the needs of entrepreneurs, the company is aiming to help small businesses buy consumer goods from local manufacturers at cost-effective prices. They also offer free delivery within 24 hours.
As of now, the company has worked with more than half of the proximity stores in Casablanca. It has also signed up 10,000 shops in the city.
OZE raises $3 million pre-Series A round
OZE, a Ghanaian fintech startup, recently raised a $3 million pre-Series A funding round led by Speedinvest, Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund and Savannah Capital. The startup intends to use the funds to expand its platform and enhance its capabilities.
OZE provides a comprehensive suite of financial tools for small businesses. These include digital recordkeeping, business coaching and access to affordable capital from banking partners. In addition, the company’s proprietary data set gives it a competitive advantage.
Founded in 2018, the platform has already garnered appreciable traction. Now, the team plans to expand into Nigeria and West Africa. Its goal is to help micro and small enterprises in Africa switch to digital operations.
According to the International Finance Corporation, the credit gap for MSMEs in sub-Saharan Africa is estimated at $331 billion. Many factors contribute to this loan gap, including a lack of collateral, formal business education and credit history. The company hopes to close this loan gap by leveraging its technology to help African businesses become more profitable.