I woke up this morning and the announcement was made to the world: Flutterwave is a true Africa-born unicorn with a valuation of at least $1 billion. The fintech company has just raised $170 million series C funding which will be crucial in improving the technology, product, customer support, and expansion drive. I went to WhatsApp and sent a short note to the CEO, Olugbenga “GB” Agboola. I wrote at 6.41 am New York time “Congrats the Category-King. You have lifted many to the mountain-top.” In seconds, he responded.
Flutterwave is one of the most important financial service providers in Africa today from the perception of global markets. It is now valued more than UBA, First Bank Holdings, Access Bank, Stanbic IBTC, and most banks except GTBank and Zenith Bank in Nigeria.
UBA – N239 billion
Access – N275.475B
Stanbic – N444.240B
First Bank FBH – N260.241B
As it stands today, at N480/$, Flutterwave is more than all those. Except Zenith and GTBank, FLW is ahead. (Source: Nigerian Stock Exchange)
Flutterwave is the most connected and integrated fintech solution in Africa with the capacity to connect Africa today. Its Barter and Momo integrations are industry-leading. It continues to play at the edges of the smiling curve and will continue to capture huge value.
From Tekedia Mini-MBA, we congratulate our Faculty (GB teaches Fintech in our school) and the Flutterwave team. I expect an invitation to the bell ringing in New York or London by 2023.
— Flutterwave (@theflutterwave) March 10, 2021
You can read more about this deal here.
Agboola told TechCrunch that the company is live in 20 African countries with an infrastructure reach in over 33 countries in the continent. He said the startup grew more than 100% in revenue within the past year due to the pandemic without being specific on numbers. It also contributed to its compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 226% from 2018.
The $170 million round underscores the high-flying state of the African fintech market which has attracted between 25% to 31% of the total VC funding last year from many sources.
In 2019, Interswitch recorded tremendous growth with its local-only verve debit card that it moved to internationalize it. The move attracted $63.3 million in debit-financing via bond placement with Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria (SEC). Visa bought a 20% stake in Interswitch for $200 million, pushing its value to $1 billion.
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