KENYA – Pezesha, a Kenyan fintech startup that is creating an expansible lending framework for Small and Medium Enterprises and institutions, has raised a seven-figure seed extension round in a bid to expand further across Africa and fulfill its mission of facilitating access to affordable working capital for SMEs.
The extension round was piloted by GreenHouse Capital, with on-lending liquidity support from Venture Garden Group which is a sister company to GreenHouse Capital.
Founded in 2016, Pezesha is working hard to solve the continent’s US$82 billion in working capital and trade finance access while enabling non-traditional finance institutions while offering working capital to SMEs working on its lending infrastructure.
This is done by providing alternative data sources to generate credit scores and building strategic partnerships with in-person social networks that exist in their communities
The partnership with VGG will expand the capital available for Pezesha and its institutional partners to lend out to SMEs.
Commenting on the press release, Pezesha Chief Executive Officer Hilda Moraa said she was delighted to have GreenHouse Capital join the Pezesha family.
“We are delighted to have GreenHouse Capital join the Pezesha family. We are aligned in vision as well as our commitment to solving the working capital challenges that are preventing African SMEs from achieving their full growth potential.”
She further pointed out how GHC’s investment will “catapult our growth by enabling us to scale our existing partnerships with the likes of Twiga Foods, Jumia, Marketforce, and Popote Pay, among others and more so, the investment will unlock our vision of building the operating system to power embedded finance in Africa.
Lauding Pezesha’s efforts to break down the barriers to SME financing and adopting an ecosystem approach to facilitate access to capital, Ruby Nimkar, Principal at GreenHouse Capital, said: “Their embedded finance model is truly ground-breaking, and we have full confidence in Hilda and the talented team at Pezesha to take their model into new markets and continuously close the SME financing gap across Africa.”
“We are aligned in vision as well as our commitment to solving the working capital challenges that are preventing African SMEs from achieving their full growth potential”
Thus far, Pezesha has scaled its fintech lending infrastructure to Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria, while working towards a September launch in Uganda and plans further expansion with its recent seed extension round.
In 2022, the company received regulatory approval from the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) of Kenya making it stand out as the first Kenyan company to successfully exit the CMA sandbox.
Pezesha had previously raised seed investments from Consonance in 2018 and also from Seedstars in 2020.
Its data-driven credit scoring model combined with its strong focus on user experience and local talented team means Pezesha is capable of iterating its solutions to best suit customers’ needs.
It financially educates borrowers and takes them through a credit scoring process before they qualify for a loan.
Another interesting thing to note is that, unlike banks, Pezesha provides loans to people who are not recorded on the credit bureau.
Pezesha shares the information with the central credit bureau for other public organizations to access when they complete their loan(s).
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