US fintech-focused venture capital firm QED Investors has led a new investment in Nigerian fintech team Apt, which provides business payments and banking platforms. The investment was more than $50 million, according to sources familiar with the matter, though neither QED nor TeamApt would confirm the number.
Existing investors from the company’s Series B last year (Crunchbase raised $30 million) – Novastar Ventures (co-lead), Lightrock and BII – all participated in this round.
While TeamApt did not provide any “letter” for this final round, it could probably be described as a pre-Series C round becauseThey said the company is still in the market to raise the Series C next year.
When asked if the current market downturn has affected the company’s Series C fundraising, the company’s Tosin Inyiolorunda said: “We always approach our fundraising efforts on a case-by-case basis. Efforts planned for the beginning of this year. “Given the overall cautious market environment, we have not been in active fundraising mode. As a profitable company, we don’t need the cash, but we were happy to have the opportunity to add a new senior investor.
The final piece of the puzzle
With nearly $5 billion in assets under management (AUM) and the recently closed seventh fund of $1.05 billion, QED has backed more than 180 companies (of which 27 are unicorns). In a rare move by Western VCs, QED has announced its hiring Gbenga Ajayi And Chidinma “Chid” Eweke This January to lead investments in Africa. Nigel MorrisIn an interview with TechCrush, the company’s founder and managing partner said Africa is the final piece of the puzzle to transform QED into a global fintech-specialist VC firm.
TeamApt operates one of Nigeria’s largest merchant payments and banking platforms and processes $100 billion in annual run rate transaction value through its Moniepoint and Monnify products. Moniepoint now serves 400,000 small and medium-sized businesses across Nigeria, enabling them to access a range of features to manage operations: working capital, business expansion loans and business management tools such as expense management (business payment cards), accounting and bookkeeping solutions and insurance.
In TeamApt, QED found a company that had stalled for four years before raising a venture round in 2019, but went on to build one of the largest fintechs in Africa (by revenue and market capitalization) – and grow a profitable 300%. The company generated more than $100 million in annual revenue last year, and its valuation has nearly quadrupled from the previous round, sources said.
“Since our bootstrap days, we’ve built products where we’ve seen positive unit economics from day one, which continues to be reflected in our profitability,” the CEO told TechCrunch in an email. “This puts us among a handful of attractive cash-flow-positive high-growth companies — even as we continue to grow triple-digits year-over-year while simultaneously expanding margins.”
Eniolorunda said this new round of financing will help TeamApt expand its credit offerings. The company’s loan portfolio is still small and it continues to borrow balances from the Microfinance Bank branch. However, as the portfolio expands, the company plans to leverage multiple credit partnerships, including banks, development finance institutions and guarantee structures, to access debt institutions.
QED is a prominent credit operator and has helped develop strong credit operations for portfolio companies such as Brazil’s Nubank and India’s Jupiter, which, according to Eniolorunda, fit TeamApt’s lead investor profile. In a January interview, QED said it expects future portfolio companies to “leverage its fintech expertise, operational expertise and willingness to roll up its sleeves” to build and scale Africa’s needs, which is central to TimAppt. Business.
Nigeria has led the way in widespread adoption of digital payments across Africa, with annual digital transaction revenues exceeding $800 billion in the first four months of this year. It is a huge fintech market with countless companies across the country offering multiple services such as Flutterwave, Chipper Cash and OPay. TeamApt, in subsequent rounds, may offer QED the chance to create another unicorn.
“I am proud to bring Africa to QED and QED to Africa. I couldn’t think of a better way to enter the continent than with our investment in TeamApp,” Gbenga Ajayi, partner and head of Africa at QED Investors, said in a statement. They have built a network. Their strong and positive unit economics coupled with deep customer focus will allow them to continue to build an even wider network.
Meanwhile, as discussed last year, TeamApt’s pan-African expansion play is still on the move, Enyolorunda; The company is targeting its first international expansion in the continent in the coming months.