Nigerian financial services comparison platform TopCheck raises $1.15m funding

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Nigerian startup TopCheck, a price comparison site for financial services launched in December last year, has closed its second major funding round of the year after raising EUR1m (US$1.15m) from a number of European investors.

The TopCheck platform allows users to compare prices of financial products such as car insurance or health insurance. Users receive a tailored quote on their desired product online and directly contact the service provider with the most attractive conditions.

Disrupt Africa reported in March TopCheck had raised funds totalling a six digit Euro figure from German investment group Tech’n’Trade and an anonymous angel investor.

The startup – the founders of which have previously worked for the likes of Google, Rocket Internet and PwC – has now received further backing, lead by globally active venture builder Mountain Partners and business angel Dr Cornelius Boersch. The European Investment Fund, the founders of Trivago, and business angels Alexander Fugger, Ron Hillmann and Martin Scherrer have also put money in, as have Lendico co-founder Clemens Paschke, the founders of Radcarpet and former Rocket chief operating officer (COO) Ferdinand Kalm.

The funding will be used to prepare TopCheck for expansion into different markets and verticals, while it will also expand its team of 10 in Lagos.

“With TopCheck, African consumers can finally enjoy the security and convenience of buying financial services online. We bring transparency to a market that traditionally suffers from inefficiency. Our customers can compare prices and save money“, founder Thomas Pilar said.

“And as a founding team with many years of internet experience, we’re very well set to be the number one player in this space.”

According to the TopCheck team, the financial services industry – particularly the business to consumer (B2C) segment – is experiencing strong growth, and is currently an untapped market in Nigeria – contributing only 0.4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) – as compared to the sector’s 2.5 per cent contribution to the USA’s GDP.

As such TopCheck believes there is vast opportunity and demand for a strong African financial services comparison platform, which can introduce transparency to the growing market.

“The current annual growth rate of 20% in the B2C financial services industry poses a huge opportunity for TopCheck”, Pilar said in March.

“Traditionally, the financial services sector in Nigeria is highly informal and customers end up paying more money than they should. The reason is that there is no centralised information source for comparing services. TopCheck is changing this with its online platform that is equally optimised for desktop and mobile,” he said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent’s most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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