US-based payments and lending services provider Stripe is acquiring its Nigeria-based portfolio company Paystack for reportedly more than $200m, according to the Financial Times.
Founded in 2016 by Ezra Olubi and Shola Akinlade, Paystack had been the first Nigerian company to join Silicon Valley’s Y Combinator accelerator programme -raising $120,000 in seed funding – and represents the country’s largest tech exit, according to news provider Nairametrics.
Stripe led an $8m series A round in Paystack in 2018, with other corporate venturing backers, including credit card company Visa and China-based internet conglomerate Tencent, taking its total to $11.7m, according to Crunchbase.
It is perhaps more mixed news for Neal Kapur, senior director at Visa Ventures, and Steven Fan, US-based executive director of investments at Tencent, as both reportedly had also tried to buy Paystack.
Both have been marked out as stars – Kapur’s other deals include Plaid and Marqeta while Fan’s exits include Uber China – but the true potential of fintech can be glimpsed in China through Ant Group, especially if the superapp model can be transferred to underbanked, fast-growing markets, such as Nigeria’s, as its population expands towards 800 million later this century.
Stripe prides itself on thinking long-term and financial inclusion certainly has some impact as an investment area. Read more in next month’s financial services sector focus by Kaloyan Andonov.
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