Lending platform Payhippo nets $1m in pre-seed funding

Payhippo, an AI-powered lending platform, has reportedly collected $1m in its pre-seed funding round, to help it expand its team.

Funds from the round will be used to hire more engineers and support its financing efforts, according to a report from techcabal.

The investment was led by Ventures Platform, Future Africa, Launch Africa and Sherpa Ventures. Contributions also came from Hustle Fund and Mercy Corps Ventures.

Payhippo, which is based in Nigeria, provides small and medium-sized businesses in Africa with financing options. Its AI technology is able to assess the creditworthiness of a business, leveraging historical bank data.

The FinTech company also helps partners offer buy now pay later services to their customers.

PayHippo co-founder Chioma Okotcha said, “I helped run my family’s business in Nigeria and I know how tough financing can be for SMEs in Nigeria. That’s why I went to work in microfinance policy. But I saw that there was still such a big need for SMEs in Nigeria and the continent.”

There have been a handful of Nigerian FinTech companies to close funding rounds this week.

Neobank FairMoney collected $42m in its seed round to help it expand into more emerging markets. The round was led by Tiger Global Management, with commitments also coming from existing FairMoney backers Flourish Ventures, Newfund, Speedinvest and partners of DST.

TeamApt, which provides financial services to the underserved market in Africa, recently closed its Series B round.

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