South African Fintech Startup Secures $16M Series-B Led By Silicon Valley VCs

Written by Peter Pedroncelli


South African fintech startup Yoco, a point-of-sale payments provider, has secured a $16 million Series-B funding round led by Silicon Valley VC firm Partech Partners.

Following a successful Series A round last year, Yoco has raised $16 million in their Series B funding round, according to the company.

Yoco builds tools and services to help small businesses accept card payments and manage their day to day activities.

Since launching in 2015, the company has grown its base to over 27,000 South African small businesses, 75 percent of which had never accepted cards previously, according to BusinessInsider.

The company is adding more than 1,500 new merchants per month, making it South Africa’s largest and fastest growing independent card payments provider by number of merchants, more than tripling in size since 2017.

South African fintech startup
The four co-founders behind South African fintech startup Yoco’s success. Photo – Yoco

The funding round was led by Partech Partners, a venture capital firm based in Silicon Valley, with participation from Orange Digital Ventures, FMO (The Dutch Development Bank) and existing Series A investors Quona Capital and Velocity Capital.

Partech previously invested in an African fintech startup, with Nigerian web platform TradeDepot receiving $3-million in funding, according to Ventureburn.

Cyril Collon, general partner at Partech and co-lead of the Partech Africa Fund, is set to join Yoco’s board.

Orange Digital Ventures Africa is a program, launched by French telecommunications operator Orange, mandated to invest directly in African startups within a number of industries including logistics, e-commerce, transport, energy, fintech, and e-health businesses, according to ITNewsAfrica.

South African fintech startup to scale its business

Yoco will use its latest round of funding to grow its network of small business merchants in South Africa, while investing in product development, operational scalability and attracting the best fintech talent.

This round of funding brings the company’s total investment to $23 million, after a successful Series A round raised via Quona Capital and Velocity Capital in 2017, according to Ventureburn.

Founded by Katlego Maphai (CEO), Carl Wazen (chief business officer), Bradley Wattrus (CFO) and Lungisa Matshoba (CTO), Yoco has long-term ambitions for pan-African growth, and it has explored various sub-Saharan markets in the past year, including running pilots in two markets, according to the company.

The fintech company was built to address the pain points that small businesses face when trying to get a card machine.

Yoco’s strategy is to partner with small businesses early in their life cycle and actively help them grow, adding services to its payments solution, which now includes point of sale software, business intelligence, accounting integrations, and working capital financing.