Visa backs Branch developing market drive - Mobile World Live

Visa backs Branch developing market drive

08 APR 2019

Emerging market-focused mobile loan provider Branch International raised $170 million in its latest funding round and inked a global partnership with joint lead investor Visa.

Under the Branch brand it supplies small loans through its mobile app and states it is the most downloaded finance app in Africa.

With the new cash injection Branch International aims to increase its business in Africa and fuel further expansion into India and Latin America.

In addition to Visa; Foundation Capital; Andreessen Horowitz; Trinity Ventures; Formation 8; the IFC; CreditEase; Victory Park; Greenspring; Foxhaven; and B Capital joined the investment round.

Alongside the funding, Branch International announced a global partnership deal with Visa. The loan company said the agreement would allow it to supply prepaid virtual debit cards, expanding its cash-out options to ATMs supporting Visa.

Visa EVP of strategy Bill Sheedy said: “Our partnership with Branch provides Visa a key distribution mechanism to reach people that were previously out of reach and help shape the future of microfinance.”

Branch International was founded in 2015 and has offices in Lagos, Mexico City, Mumbai and Nairobi in addition to its headquarters in San Francisco. It states it has 3 million customers and has processed 13 million loans to date.

Mobile loans are considered a growth area in developing markets and are regularly cited as a potential opportunity by mobile money providers looking to expand the scope of their services.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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