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Nigerian fintech Zone raises $8.5m to scale its decentralized payment infrastructure


Zone, the Nigerian payment infrastructure company has raised $8.5 million in an oversubscribed seed funding round led by VC firms Flourish Ventures and TLcom Capital. 

The fintech plans to use the new to further to further expand the coverage of its network domestically and connect more banks and financial services companies.

A significant portion of the proceeds will also be allocated to conducting a comprehensive pilot programme to test the Company’s cross-border capabilities, scheduled for 2025. 

The company says its key priority is to ensure that it is well-prepared to extend its footprint across Africa to support intra-African and international payments which will bring the company closer to its vision of becoming a global payment network.  

The participation of high-quality investors despite the funding drought and the fact that we had more interested investors than we needed, is a sign of trust in the Zone brand and investor excitement about the opportunity to redefine payment infrastructure in Africa.”  Obi Emetarom, CEO and co-founder of Zone, said. 

”As we step into this new phase at Zone, we are re-energized and our commitment to transforming Africa’s payment infrastructure is renewed. Our new investors and existing shareholders including CCA, Lateral Capital, Constant Ventures and V8 bring more than just financial backing as their global scope and deep expertise make them invaluable partners for us. With their support, we are poised to accelerate our mission to connect every monetary store of value and enable real-time payments within and across geographical borders. Zone is committed to staying at the forefront of technological advancement and industry evolution in financial services.” 

The deal marks a pivotal moment for Zone as the company continues on its journey to build a Blockchain-based decentralized payment infrastructure for financial services providers across the continent and beyond.  By harnessing the power of blockchain, Zone’s blockchain network delivers reliable, frictionless and universally interoperable payment experiences at scale to financial service providers and their customers. Zone has a unique position as Africa’s first regulated blockchain network for payments and has already signed up over 15 of Africa’s largest banks and fintech companies.

Flourish Ventures, an early-stage global fintech venture firm with purpose will provide Zone with a global perspective, networks of industry influencers and extensive Africa fintech expertise, paving the way for expansion into new markets. UK-based TLcom Capital provides essential local credibility and understanding of the African tech space while leveraging its existing relationships with key decision-makers In Nigeria to establish a strong foundation for Zone within its home market. 

Other investors in this round include international blockchain-focused VC firms Digital Currency Group (DCG), VKAV (Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures) and Alter Global.

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Nixon Kanali

Tech journalist based in Nairobi. I track and report on tech and African startups. Founder and Editor of TechTrends Media. Nixon is also the East African tech editor for Africa Business Communities. Send tips to nkanali@techtrendske.co.ke.

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