African FinTech payment startup Chipper Cash has attracted some high-profile investors and raised $2.4 million in a funding round, according to a report in TechCrunch.
The company went live in October of 2018, and it’s a no-fee, P2P cross-border startup. The funding round was led by Deciens Capital and joined by 500 Startups and Liquid 2 Ventures, which was co-founded by legendary former 49ers quarterback Joe Montana.
Chipper Cash Chief Executive Ham Serunjogi went to Montana directly to pitch the company to him.
“He was quite excited about what we’re doing and his belief that the next wave of (tech) growth will come from …Africa,” Serunjogi said.
Africa is widely believed to be the next frontier in cashless payments because of the huge unbanked and underbanked population on the continent.
The company has offices in Ghana and Nairobi, and it’s based in San Francisco. It’s processed 250,000 transactions for upwards of 70,000 active users.
The company is also launching a merchant-facing C2B mobile payments app called Chipper Checkout, which will be a paid app. The company plans to use revenues from Checkout to support its no-fee business.
500 Startups’ investment was led by Sheel Mohnot, who compared the company to PayPal in its early stages.
“When PayPal started it was just a consumer to consumer free app. It still is free for consumer to consumer, but they monetized the merchant side. That model is tried and tested. It just doesn’t exist in Africa, so Chipper has the opportunity to do that,” he said.
One of the key features of Chipper Cash is how it handles cross-border payments.
“Our tech settles cross-border currency transactions in real time, and that’s part of the value proposition of the platform,” Serunjogi said.
He said having Montana as an investor adds value. “Having access to a someone with the leadership qualities of Joe to provide advice and guidance … that’s something that’s priceless,” said Serunjogi.