Kenyan FinTech Zanifu bags $11.2m for inventory financing expansion

Kenyan FinTech Zanifu bags $11.2m for inventory financing expansion

Zanifu, a Kenyan FinTech that specialises in offering inventory financing to micro, small and medium-sized businesses, has successfully secured an impressive $11.2m in a recent funding round.

This funding round witnessed a contribution of $11.2m in debt-equity and was spearheaded by Beyond Capital Ventures and Variant Investments, according to a report from TechCrunch. Several other investors, such as Founders Factory Africa, AAIC Investment, Google Black Founders Fund, and existing investor Launch Africa, also marked their presence in this round.

This financial boost has now escalated the total debt-equity funding amassed by the start-up to an impressive $12.7m.

Zanifu has carved a niche for itself by providing inventory credit to retailers. With the infusion of this fresh funding, CEO Steve Biko reveals plans to broaden the solution, targeting distributors in addition to retailers.

The company holds a vision of aiding businesses that face challenges in securing credit from established financial entities due to an absence of structured accounting books, assets for collateral, and overall organisational structure. However, the need for credit is pivotal for these businesses, not just for sustenance but also for expansion. This is where Zanifu steps in, extending credit based on data insights from businesses and their suppliers. The fintech effectively minimises risks by paying suppliers directly.

Sharing insights, Biko commented, “In our first product, we only lent retailers to help them expand their business, but we found out that distributors have a similar problem.”

The company has structured its credit offerings based on business size. Distributors can avail up to $10,000, while retailers can acquire goods ranging between $200-$500. Proudly, Zanifu has extended credit to approximately 13,000 micro-businesses and catered to 500 distributors following the broadening of its customer spectrum.

This FinTech is licensed by the Central Bank of Kenya and holds ambitious plans to diversify into other financial domains, such as insurance, while also developing tools to aid businesses in inventory management and bookkeeping.

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