Nigeria’s online savings platform secures $1.1 million seed funding to develop its products and expand massively

Piggybank said the fund will help the company to improve its operations and create a better product

Nigeria’s online and mobile app savings platform, Piggybank has secured a $1.1 million seed funding for license acquisition, product development and improve operational standard.

The company, in a statement made available to Business Insider Sub-Saharan Africa on Thursday, May 31, 2018, said the funding was led by Olumide Soyombo, Founder of LeadPath Nigeria, with participation from international and pan-African investors Village Capital and Ventures Platform.

Joshua Chibueze, Co-founder Piggybank in a telephone conversation with Business Insider Sub-Saharan Africa said, “The fund will help us to improve our operations and create a better product for our customers."

“We will expands massively, ” We will hire more engineers, expands our developers' team, more financial experts and have more scalable products."

He said our 20,000 people are currently on the waiting of the list who are contemplating whether to use the platform or not.

“This is the beginning of the firm, we are building trust, delivering quality service... for now the fund will help us to broaden our operations and put trust to our customers.”

Founded in 2016 by Somto Ifezue, Odunayo Eweniyi and Joshua Chibueze, graduates of Covenant University, Nigeria, Piggybank.ng is positioned to fill a void for tens of millions of Nigerians, who have no access to credit, in a country where up to two years’ rent is often required upfront to secure a home.

Odunayo Eweniyi, Co-Founder and COO of Piggybank says: “In a country such as Nigeria, almost everything has to be paid in advance. The majority of Nigerians struggle to save their income, manage cash flow and build credit, which is a huge problem as around 80% of Nigerians need to save a minimum of 40% of their monthly income, in order to survive. This is the sheer scale of the challenge we are embracing; to actively promote a savings culture in Nigeria and act as the savings infrastructure to millions of people who want a safe, transparent and innovative platform to assist them in managing their finances, on their journeys to financial freedom.”

Having completed accelerator programs with Blackbox, the CcHub’s Pitch Drive, powered by Google for Entrepreneurs, and Google Launchpad Africa, Piggybank said it has built a savings community of over 53,000 registered users of which approximately 60% are Nigerian millennials, who have saved in excess of $5 million, with a savings growth of 3000% between 2016-17.

Olumide Soyombo, Co-Founder Leadpath adds: “Piggybank.ng is a leading example of how Africans are innovating to solve African problems.

"...I’m excited to have led other local angel investors this investment round, and to now work closely with the team to grow the platform”

In addition to securing its Seed Funding of $1.1M, Piggybank said it has acquired a micro-financing license from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which provides the relevant regulatory cover, allowing them independence from partnering with banks.

"Piggybank is in the process of finalising the Micro-finance status with the Central Bank of Nigeria. “We are concluding and doing all the paper works,” Chibueze told BISSA.

The online saving platform also announced the launch of a new product - Smart Target – which is modelled on the age-long West African tradition of 'ajo or esusu' to leverage the power of communal savings and harness the network effect of accountability.

The Smart Target is a group savings tool, that can be scaled from family-size to large corporations, based on the age-long West African tradition of savings (ajo or esusu) which will be available from June 2018.

Piggy Bank saved N1 billion in 2017 while increasing its users of 60% millennials on the platform by 3000%  between 2016 and 2017.

The Nigerian startup listed these feats in its 2017 financial statement concerning about its annual progress.

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