Today in Payments Around the World: Unicorn Sightings Across Africa, EML Adds Open Banking  

B2B, Today in Payments Around the World, international, EML Payments, B2B Payments, VerfoFX, Ofbusiness, Andela, Sentenial

Today in payments around the world, VertoFX raises $10 million to expand currencies on its platform, and Ofbusiness’ B2B platform is valued at $3 billion. Plus, Andela‘s recent funding round makes it the sixth unicorn in Africa, and EML Payments acquires Sentenial to push into open banking. 

Andela Unicorn Status Increases Buzz Around Africa’s Startup Scene 

Unicorns are appearing all over Africa, a key indication that the continent’s startup scene continues to blossom, helped by booming FinTech and eCommerce sectors and a young, tech-savvy population.  

After payments startups Flutterwave and OPay attained unicorn status earlier this year, software developer training and outsourcing company Andela is the sixth and most recent Africa-focused firm to join the unicorn ranks — a private company with a valuation of over $1 billion. 

Ofbusiness B2B Platform Reaches $3B Valuation 

Indian B2B platform Ofbusiness is now valued at $3 billion after recently closing a $200 million funding round, according to a report on Thursday (Sept. 30). Ofbusiness’ Series F fundraising effort, which was led by Tiger Global, puts the company at double its $1.5 billion valuation from July. 

Ofbusiness was valued at more than $800 million after it closed a $97 million funding round that was led by Falcon Edge Capital earlier this year. Falcon Edge and fellow existing investor SoftBank Vision Fund II were also part of the recent Series F funding round. 

EML Payments Buys Open Banking Firm Sentenial in Multi-Million Dollar Deal 

Australian global payments platform EML Payments on Thursday (Sept. 30) bought open banking company Sentenial Group for an upfront enterprise value of 70 million euros (about $108.6 million), in addition to an earn-out component of up to 40 million euros (about $62.1 million), after getting the blessing of French and U.K. regulators. 

The deal also includes Sentenial payments-as-a-service subsidiary Nuapay and kicks off EML Payments’ launch into open banking. 

B2B Payments Platform Verto Raises $10M 

B2B payments platform VertoFX raised $10 million in Series A funding in a move to help expand the list of currencies on its platform, according to a TechCrunch report Thursday (Sept. 30). The London- and Nigeria-based company allows small- to medium-sized businesses in emerging markets to pay suppliers. 

Founders Ola Oyetayo and Anthony Oduwole launched VertoFX in 2018. Oduwole told PYMNTS’ Karen Webster in 2019 that they were inspired to launch the company when inflation drove the dollar to be worth several hundred Nigerian naira, compared to 150 naira in the past.