Pakistan-based Finja announced today it has closed a bridge round worth US$1 million, led by Vostok Emerging Finance, a Swedish investment firm. Terms of the equity funding were not disclosed.
The deal is part of a mooted US$1.5 million capital injection. The startup says it expects to close the remaining US$500,000 in the next few months and is currently in discussion with other investors to finalize proceedings.
Finja, which still operates in private beta, is preparing for the commercial launch of a customer-facing mobile wallet in collaboration with Finca Microfinance Bank.
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“The cost associated with cash transactions is extremely high and also leads to wastage of useful resources both in terms of time and money spent,” Qasif Shahid, co-founder and CEO of Finja tells Tech in Asia. “We intend to create a product which will play a lead role in changing payment behavior and how people handle and manage money digitally.”
But Qasif is cagey on details pertaining to the scope of financial products it plans on offering. Questions regarding possible use cases were left unanswered. The only information he proffered was that the funds would be used in controlling the distribution and user experience of the eventual product.
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One of Finja’s other co-founders is Monis Rahman, CEO of Naseeb Networks, which raised US$6.5 million last year to expand job portals Rozee and Minhati.
“This is just the beginning of our journey,” explained Monis in a statement.
David Nangle, managing director of Vostok Emerging Finance, will take a seat on Finja’s board as part of the agreement.
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“We are delighted to partner with a truly world-class team in one of the most exciting fintech markets globally with massive untapped potential,” explained David. “Pakistan’s rapidly growing 3G/4G enabled smartphone subscribers, supported by a progressive regulatory framework, are a game changer for providing digital financial services to the country’s 200 million under-banked population.”
This article originally appeared on Tech in Asia
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