Kenyan tech-led consumer credit platform, Lipa Later, is set to broaden its continental presence into new markets following its $12,000,000 pre-Series A funding raise.
Cauris Finance, Lateral Frontiers VC, GreenHouse Capital, SOSV IV LLC, Sayani Investments and Axian Financial Services are investors who participated in Lipa Later’s equity and debt funding round.
Lipa Later is a buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) company founded in 2018. The startup’s expansion into new markets includes countries such as Tanzania, Ghana and Nigeria, as well as strengthening its presence in existing markets such as Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.
The company targets achieving this growth and expansion plan within the next 12 months.
Lipa Later has exclusive partnerships with retailers across these markets allowing shoppers to pay for products in installments. For instance, Lipa Later’s partnership with French retailer Carrefour (which has a regional presence) allows customers to pay for items including furniture, electronics and even perishables in monthly installments.
Customers pay a monthly interest rate (about 2.3% in the case of Carrefour) on the credit extended to them. The startup is planning to forge more partnerships with merchants in its plan to cover more countries across Africa.
Lipa Later’s proprietary credit scoring and machine learning system allow consumers to sign up and get a credit limit almost instantly.
Also, the startup has built a BNPL API that integrates into e-commerce platforms, enabling merchants sell products directly to consumers and making it possible for consumers to remit monthly installments for items purchased.
In its bid to traverse Africa, where opportunities abound as e-commerce and alternative credit sources grow, Lipa Later will have to contend with competition from South Africa’s Payflex (which was recently acquired by Australian BNPL Zip) and PayJustNow, and Nigeria’s PayQart and Carbon Zero.