Lusaka, Zambia, September 18, 2023: Pioneering Zambian neobank, Lupiya has successfully secured $8.25 million in Series A seed funding round. The fundraising was led by Alitheia IDF Fund, a Private Equity Fund that invests with a gender lens, with substantial participation from INOKS Capital SA and the German Investment Bank KfW DEG.
Founded in 2016, the neobank has steadily risen as a prominent figure in Zambia's fintech scene and has an impressive list of backers that includes Mastercard, Google, The World Bank, and the UN International Trade Center. Lupiya’s primary mission is to bridge the financial inclusion gap by offering easy-to-use, technology-driven financial solutions to the unbanked and underbanked populations in Zambia. Lupiya’s efforts were recently lauded by US Vice President Kamala Harris during her visit to Zambia where she said, “Providing capital to women helps them increase the economic status of their families and their communities.”
Evelyn Chilomo Kaingu, Co-founder and CEO of Lupiya, expressed her excitement about the funding: "This Series A investment marks a significant milestone in our journey to continue serving our customers and the opportunity to further provide holistic financial solutions. The team at Lupiya has worked hard and is excited for the new phase of our growth. With the support of Alitheia IDF, INOKS Capital, Mastercard, and Kfw DEG, we are better poised to scale our operations and deepen our footprint not just in Zambia but also in the broader Southern and East African region."
The funding will be channeled into enhancing Lupiya's technological infrastructure, expanding its range of financial products, and scaling its operations to reach more customers.
Polo Leteka, founder of South African based financial service firm, IDF Capital, and a co-Managing Partner of Alitheia IDF Fund, commented on their decision to lead the round, stating, "We have always been on the lookout for startups that are at the cusp of making a significant impact in the financial sector of Africa. Lupiya's vision and dedication to financial and gender inclusion resonates deeply with our own objectives. We believe that with this funding, they will be better equipped to make financial services accessible to many more Zambians."
"It's remarkable to witness Lupiya's growth, especially given our initial investment of $1 million during the peak of the pandemic. We have always believed in the resilience and potential of this team. Their vision to transform financial inclusion in Zambia, even amidst global challenges, aligns perfectly with Enygma's mission,” says Sarah Dusek, a partner at Enygma Ventures - one of the early backers of Lupiya. “Today's Series A funding further validates our early belief and the transformative power of resilient entrepreneurship.”
Vincent Malekani, Mastercard Country Director for Zambia, and Malawi stated, "Our collaboration with Lupiya stands as a testament to Mastercard's commitment to fostering digital inclusion across Africa. Lupiya's emphasis on bringing reliable financial services to the underserved resonates deeply with us. By integrating Mastercard's payment rails into the Lupiya platform, we are not only enhancing transaction efficiency for users. but also building a more inclusive financial ecosystem in Zambia.
“Partnerships of this nature support Mastercard’s global commitment to bring 1 billion people into the digital economy by 2025, including 25 million women entrepreneurs.”
The involvement of renowned financial institutions like INOKS Capital SA and KfW DEG further underscores the trust and confidence the global investor community places in Lupiya's potential to revolutionize the financial landscape in Zambia.
As fintech solutions continue to reshape the African financial ecosystem, Lupiya's fresh capital infusion is yet another testament to the continent's dynamic and evolving digital economy.