Ascend Money becomes first Thai FinTech unicorn after $150m funding haul

Ascend Money has raised $150m in funding to become the first Thai unicorn at a $1.5bn valuation.

The funding saw contributions from Bow Wave Capital Management, Charoen Pokphand Group and Ant Group.

Established in 2013, Ascend Money markets TrueMoney, a digital payment and financial service platform that serves over 50 million users through its e-wallet application. The company operates in Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam and the Philippines.

According to Ascend, the newly raised capital will be used to grow its TrueMoney Wallet and expand digital financial services such as digital lending, digital investment cross-border remittances across Southeast Asia.

Ascend has seen substantial growth over the past few years, scoring a total payment volume of US$14bn last year.

Ascend co-president Monsinee Nakapanant said, “As Southeast Asia’s homegrown fintech company, our mission is to enable everyone to access innovative financial services to better their lives. We have been blessed with overwhelming support from our shareholders and the new investor, with strong interest both in terms of capital investment and the quality of strategic partnership. At the same time, the unicorn achievement reinforces our ability to scale our purpose and mission. Looking ahead, we continue to strengthen collaboration with our stakeholders in the region to improve the lives of many through our platform”

Fellow Ascend co-president Tanyapong Thamavaranukupt added, “Ascend Money is driving cashless society and the adoption of financial services across the region through TrueMoney Wallet application. The company has also expanded its portfolio to cover a full range of digital financial services including digital lending, digital saving, and digital investment.

“It’s easy-to-use and seamless platform has introduced low-income communities, people without regular income and young digital generation to personal financial management for the first time. Ascend Money also provides domestic and cross-border remittance services through its agent network, supporting local entrepreneurs with increased incomes. We will continue fulfilling our mission and helping more people through our innovation, strong customer experience, reliable and trustworthy platform.”

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