South African fintech startup My-iMali raises funding from Crossfin

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Mobile wallet platform My-iMali has raised funding from fintech holding company Crossfin to help it grow its customer base.

Founded in 2018, My-iMali has developed the BxChange E-Wallet App, an affordable, easy to use and convenient digital wallet that enables customers to make transfers to bank accounts, and top-up or purchase prepaid products and services.

The startup provides lower-income consumers with the ability to transact anywhere in the world without paying any monthly fees, and gives businesses a more affordable, safe and convenient channel for salary disbursements.

Disrupt Africa reported in September it had launched an Uprise.Africa crowdfunding campaign in a bid to raise ZAR24 million (US$1.6 million), but to date it has secured just ZAR38,000 (US$2,600) of that target. My-iMali has now raised funding via a more traditional manner, however, banking an undisclosed amount of capital from the Crossfin angel investment arm.

The investment, which was undertaken in partnership with Investec Private Capital through its Emerging Companies mandate, adds My-iMali to a fintech-focused Crossfin portfolio that also includes the likes of wiGroup, iKhokha, Crossgate and Nobuntu.

Anton Gaylard, co-founder and chief operating officer at Crossfin, said the decision to invest in My-iMali came down to the strength of the team, the product and the place it has in the market. 

“We have looked at similar solutions in the past, but have rarely seen one that works end-to-end and fills such a clear gap in the South African financial ecosystem,” he said.

Crossfin’s portfolio of companies can give My-iMali access to more than 9,000 retail stores with more than 110,000 integrated point of sale lanes and 25,000 active merchants. 

“While My-iMali operates locally for now, there is a clear need for this type of solution in other African countries. We will work closely with the companies in our portfolio to identify and unlock opportunities for growth, both locally and abroad,” said Gaylard.

“We’re working across the portfolio to establish a cashless economy in Africa that brings more people into the formal economic fold by giving them access to affordable, convenient and value-adding financial services.”

Matt Goosen, co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of My-iMali, said its users can download a mobile app from the Google or Apple app stores, accessed via the web or USSD, which acts as an e-wallet. 

“Because payments are made directly to the wallet, users are not subject to banking charges, which greatly reduces the cost of using the service,” he said. 

“Users can then draw cash from any ATM worldwide and any POS device in stores around the country by transacting with a prepaid Mastercard debit card linked to their e-wallet, which can also be used for online shopping or Uber. Via our app, users can purchase airtime, electricity, and a range of value-added services as well as send and receive money for free within the wallet.”

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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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