Blnk, an Egyptian fintech startup, aims to improve financial inclusion among underserved communities across the country.
Blnk, an Egyptian fintech that aims to enable instant consumer credit in Egypt, has raised USD 23.7 million in equity and debt funding and a further USD 8.3 million in securitized bond issuance. The company aims to accelerate financial inclusion among underserved communities in Egypt. The funds will be used to further develop the company’s AI-powered lending system and finance the company’s customers.
The pre-seed and seed rounds were led by Abi Dhabi’s Emirates International Investment Company (EIIC) and Egypt-based VC firm Sawari Ventures, along with local and international angel investors. The debt funding was secured from local banks and the USD 8.3 securitized bond issuance was underwritten by National Bank of Egypt and Banque du Caire.
Blnk: Instantly providing finance
Blnk’s digital lending platform allows merchants to instantly underwrite and finance their customers’ purchases at the point of sale. According to the company, the process takes only three minutes and can provide access to financing for a wide range of products or services with installments ranging from six to 36 months. Blnk has disbursed more than USD 20 million in loans to date. Merchants are also boosting their profitability via the transaction commission that Blnk provides.
Partnering with Blnk
Speaking about the new funding, Amr Sultan, co-founder and CEO of Blnk said, “Our mission is to make it easier for more Egyptians to purchase the products and services they desire by offering inclusive and convenient consumer credit at the point of sale. We are delighted to have the backing of a great cohort of investors at an early stage in our journey. With their support, we believe we can drive financial inclusion in Egypt, as well as the wider Middle East and North Africa region”.
Joseph Iskander, Head of Investment at EIIC, said, “we are convinced that the Egyptian market and its startup ecosystem present a compelling opportunity for regional and international investors and we are committed to identifying and investing in value accretive businesses. We are pleased to partner with Blnk to drive financial inclusion and economic development in Egypt and we look forward to working with the team to achieve their goals”.
Hany Al Sonbaty, Managing Partner at Sawari Ventures, said, “we are thrilled to have Blnk in our portfolio and backing them to deliver innovative solutions to tackle the urgent challenge of financial inclusion in Egypt. The company has the right combination of a seasoned team and a scalable business model, with a clear path to profitability”.
A lack of credit hampering growth
According to the International Monetary Fund, Egypt is expected to become the second largest Arab and African economy by the end of the year. However, Egypt, like much of Africa, is still a largely cash-based economy and few individuals have access to credit, limiting their economic opportunities.
Money Fellows, another Egyptian startup, recently receiving funding to support the expansion of money circles across Egypt in order to allow individuals to create savings or borrowing groups.