Fintech raises $11M for PH digital bank
The Singapore-based parent company of UNO Digital Bank, one of the six pioneer digital bank licensees in the Philippines, has raised $11 million to support its foray into the local banking scene.
Fintech UNOAsia Pte. Ltd. (UNOAsia) closed its “pre-series A” round led by Creador Private Equity. Creador has so far invested a total of $21 million and plans to increase this further, making it UNOAsia’s largest investor, the company said in a press statement on Tuesday.
Series A funding gives outside investors the opportunity to invest cash in a growing company in exchange for equity, or partial ownership.
“It is estimated that out of the Philippines’ 70-million adult population, about 45 million are underbanked, which limits their access to financial services and the assistance they need to purchase homes, further their education, reduce their debt, invest in businesses, and ultimately improve their lives. Our investment in UNOAsia will allow us to promote financial inclusion in a country where only 10 percent are borrowing from the organized sector, which in turn would make a positive impact on millions of Filipinos and the broader community,” said Omar Mahmoud, managing director of Creador Private Equity.
Manish Bhai, CEO of UNO Digital Bank, said the funding round led by Creador reflected continued investor confidence in the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas-licensed digital bank.
“The additional capital will help us to further invest to support our growth, as well as see us through the commercial launch of UNO Digital Bank, which is now a live operating bank under closed-loop beta,” Bhai said.
To date, UNOAsia has raised a total of $44.5 million in new investment. Aside from Creador, its investors include founders Manish Bhai and Kalidas Ghose, Akash Bhanshali (Payash Securities), Samir Arora (Helios Capital) and other senior investors from the banking and financial sectors.
UNOAsia has strategic plans to ultimately create a regional business, expanding beyond the Philippines over the next few years.
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