TerraPay, a Dutch FinTech, has been acquired by a number of investors, including Prime Ventures, Partech Africa and management for an undisclosed amount. Along with IFC, those same entities have invested $9.6 million into the company to aid with expansion, according to a release.
The company provides payment infrastructure services to help people around the globe move money around more quickly and safely. It also aims to enable banks, mobile money operators and other providers to connect with one another at a low cost.
TerraPay was launched in 2015. The company holds more than 25 licenses to do business in more than 60 countries in Africa, Asia and Europe, per the release.
“We believe in our mission to address financial inclusion by making real-time national, regional and global payments accessible to everyone,” said Ambar Sur, founder and CEO of TerraPay. “We are excited by this validation from our marquee investors, and look forward to growing rapidly and reaching most of the world’s underserved in the coming years.”
TerraPay management said it developed the FinTech company to solve a problem that many countries faced when trying to execute cross-border payments.
“The costs to send money to and from emerging countries, especially in Africa and Asia, are some of the highest globally, averaging 9.3 percent compared to the global average of 7 percent, yet remittances are a major contributor to the GDP of recipient countries,” the release said. “A large portion of the remittance cost is related to cash handling at the sending and receiving end.”
A big part of the problem is the number of mobile money providers with no interoperability between networks. TerraPay’s payments infrastructure, according to the release, “opens the possibility to include merchants traditionally excluded from credit card systems, [to] allow companies to pay salaries through mobile money accounts and [to] help banks settle remittances in real time.”
“We identified TerraPay as an attractive investment opportunity,” noted Pieter Welten, a partner at Prime Ventures. “Led by a strong and experienced management team, TerraPay has a unique market position and strong economic moat comprising licenses and regulatory approvals, a world-class digital payments platform and a global network of partners. Our investment should allow the company to further expand and scale its operations.”