Sources: Nigerian Digital Bank FairMoney Negotiating $20M All-Stock Purchase of Umba

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FairMoney, a digital bank based in Lagos and headquartered in Paris, is in discussions to acquire Umba, a credit-led digital bank providing payroll and financial services to customers in Nigeria and Kenya, in a $20 million all-stock deal, sources tell TechCrunch. Umba, founded by Tiernan Kennedy and Barry O’Mahony in San Francisco in 2018, was launched as a credit-led digital bank targeting emerging markets. To date, the digital bank has secured around $20 million in funding, per PitchBook data. FairMoney could likely be more interested in Umba’s microfinance license, obtained in 2022 through acquiring a majority shareholding in Daraja Microfinance Bank. For FairMoney, acquiring Umba could streamline entry into Kenya, bypassing the lengthy licensing process that took Umba three years.

“Shamba Pride: Kenyan Agtech Secures $3.7M for Expansion of Merchant Network”

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Shamba Pride has since 2016 worked to enhance last-mile distribution for farm inputs and tackle price exploitation and quality issues for farmers through its merchant network dubbed digishops. The agtech has, so far, built a network of merchants (agro-dealers) extending across 24 counties in Kenya, which represents just over half of the country. The new funding, which includes $1.7 million equity, follows $1.1 million capital raised in 2021 from SAV and Gray Matters Capital. “Agriculture distribution in rural communities is heavily controlled by agro-dealers who decide how farmers access inputs, services and training. Shamba Pride sources inventory from partners such as French multinational Elephant Verve that supplies it with “climate-smart” farm inputs, which is part of the agtech’s strategy to build resilience for small-holder farmers.