BY TOM JACKSON
Nigerian payments startup Flutterwave has closed a US$170 million Series C funding round, the largest amount ever secured by an African tech startup and one that gives it “unicorn” status with a value of over US$1 billion.
Launched in 2016, Flutterwave builds modern payments technology and infrastructure for Africa to enable people and businesses to connect with the global economy. Its solution enables banks and merchants to replace multiple payment integrations with one simple API, which enables processing of any form of payment anywhere in Africa.
The startup is one of Africa’s most-backed, raising US$10 million in Series A funding in August 2017, an extension round in 2018, and a US$35 million Series B in January of last year. It has now added to that funding with a record-breaking Series C round worth US$170 million, which takes the value of the company to over US$1 billion.
US-based investment firms Avenir Growth Capital and Tiger Global led the round, which also includes new and existing investors including DST Global, Early Capital Berrywood, Green Visor Capital, Greycroft Capital, Insight Ventures, PayPal, Salesforce Ventures, Tiger Management, and WorldpayFIS 9yards Capital.
Flutterwave has an active presence in 11 African countries, including Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and South Africa, and at the time of its Series B just over one year ago had processed 100 million transactions valued at over US$5.4 billion for global leaders including Uber and Booking.com. The funding is for expansion into new markers.