EGYPT – Cairo-based fintech Khazna has raised seed funding to enable it offer “customer-centric services” to over 20 million active smartphone users in Egypt who lack access to formal banking and financial services.

Menabytes reported that the Egyptian VC Algebra Ventures led the seed round which also featured Accion Venture Lab, Accion’s seed-stage fund that recently closed US$33 million in fresh funds.

Founded last year by Omar Saleh, Ahmed Wagueeh, Fatimah El Shenawy, and Omar Salah, Khazna aims to provide mobile financial services to over 20 million underbanked Egyptian.

Khazna says these target population actively uses smartphones but have little access to formal financial services.

The fintech’s first product is Khazna HR, a salary cash advance app that allows employers (who partner with it) to offer cash advance to their employees as a benefit, helping them to cover for unforeseen emergencies.

The fintech however says that the salary advance is the first of many services that it is currently working on.

It said it was working with major banking and corporate partners to launch different products that will allow users to pay, save, borrow and insure with minimal face-to-face or phone interaction.

Khazna’s co-founder and CEO, Omar Saleh, in a statement explained that Khazna will use the investment to advance their “financial inclusion-focused products.”

 “We’re seeing the rise of a new wave of Egyptian Fintech startups that are attracting interest from local and international investors. We’re excited to be leading this round with Khazna,” Tarek Assaad, Managing Partner with Algebra Ventures, said.

“Omar is an exceptional entrepreneur and we believe that he and his team will grow Khazna to be one of the most transformative startups emerging from Egypt in the next few years.”

Egypt has made strides in recent years toward greater financial inclusion, but millions of Egyptians still struggle to access the financial services they need to build better lives.

 Fintech startups like Khazna are uniquely positioned to develop better, faster, safer ways to meet the needs of the underserved.