Zambian fintech startup Zazu raises US$1.4million. Zazu is a digital marketplace connecting farmers to buyers. Farmers with extra produce are able to connect with new markets, while buyers are provided with a more sophisticated and easy way to order more produce for less, it allows both farmers and buyers to accurately track their inventory.
The startup, which is registered in the UK but has an office in Zambia, now offers users a digital money account. It was founded in 2015 by Perseus Mlambo while COO Alessandra Martini joined as co-founder in 2016.
The startup ran a successful crowdfunding campaign that same year, and has since then developed two products focused on the Zambian market. The first, a chatbot that uses SMS to teach people how financial services work, has been used by over 1.1. million people, while Zazu has also built a digital wallet app that is connected to a prepaid card to give people more control over their spending.
Zazu said the beta product has certainly made an impact. current client base includes retailers, NGOs and individuals – who are all using Zazu to simplify how they make and collect payments, as well as manage their money. “If we are to achieve our mission of making money simple, we will need to have clients from all walks of life – from casual workers who are looking to get paid on the go, to parents who want to teach financial discipline to their children and eventually – even banks. Put shortly, this really is the most exciting phase in our journey and we are just getting started. With the arrival of our prepaid cards, we are entering a new chapter in our journey. And with the investment mentioned above, we will be able to reach more of our customers, wherever they are.”
“With 15 people on the team, we have been able to cover a lot of ground. Our products have been used by over a million Zambians and this investment is going to see us welcome our first 100,000 cardholders, as well as increase our team size,” said Perseus Mlambo, chief executive officer (CEO) at Zazu.
Zazu, meanwhile, plans to run another crowdfunding campaign in order to help it take its products out of beta.
The US$1.4 million in funding, which comes from undisclosed sources, will help Zazu expand its team and better market its product to build its user base.
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