valU acquires minority stake in fintech Kiwe
- Egypt-based fintech valU has acquired a minority stake in the social payment app Kiwe, for an unknown amount.
- Founded in 2018 in Egypt by Omar Kamel, Fatma Ibrahim and Mohamed Khalifa, Kiwe targets young users, allowing them to collect, send, and spend money through its app. It also offers small businesses and startups a digital payment platform with the goal of alleviating the daily financial struggles faced by young entrepreneurs.
- valU, founded in 2017, is a subsidiary of EFG Hermes Holding that provides a buy now pay later (BNPL) service with a presence in Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
- The acquisition will build on valU’s mission to fuel the growth of cashless transactions, and widen its client base of young individuals.
valU announced on Wednesday its acquisition of a minority stake in local fintech startup Kiwe — the first social payment app that facilitates onboarding the unbanked segment in Egypt.
Currently, EFG Hermes Finance, EFG EV Fintech, dfin Holding, and Marakez are among the firm’s existing shareholders.
Kiwe’s fintech solutions attract young people, as the company capitalises on their daily hassles of payment and social engagement, allowing them to easily collect, send, and spend money electronically.
Additionally, it offers small businesses and startups a digital, simple, and cost-efficient payment platform with the goal of alleviating the daily financial struggles faced by young entrepreneurs doing business.
By combining Kiwe’s service offering with valU’s BNPL plans, valU is delivering on its vision of becoming a holistic financing powerhouse, providing progressive and convenient solutions to every aspect of people’s daily lives.
The investment also compliments valU’s recent strategic acquisition of Paynas — a full-fledged employee management and benefits company that provides financial products such as payroll cards and digital salary advances to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
The minority stake acquisition in Kiwe builds on valU’s mission to fuel the growth of cashless transactions, which positively impacts financial inclusion in Egypt. It is also in line with valU’s mission to widen its client base of young individuals and small businesses and will support Kiwe’s expansion by tapping into valU’s vast network of vendors across numerous sectors.
This investment builds on an existing partnership between Kiwe and valU, which has seen them successfully join forces across several large events such as Le Marche and Shababco. This partnership has also facilitated the participation of new exhibitors who had no previous access to payment solutions.
Habiba Naguib — Head of Strategy and Market Expansion at valU — said: “This strategic investment in Kiwe comes as a natural step to further bolster our portfolio of financial services by extending more innovative solutions to MSMEs and young people. Serving these segments allows us to reach a larger population, ensure that we are alleviating financial hassles, drive financial inclusion, and contribute to greater convenience for millions of customers.”
“With its unique offering and simplified, engaging user experience, Kiwe will greatly benefit from leveraging our vast and ever-growing network of vendors. Hence, this is an investment that promises growth for all. We believe we can create more innovative financial solutions that unlock many opportunities for us and our users, creating long-term value for the people who rely on our services every day to improve their lives, grow their businesses, and positively impact their communities.”
This investment marks the first for Kiwe this year, however, it plans to fundraise a seed round in the coming months.
For his part, Co-Founder of Kiwe Omar Kamel said: “For us at Kiwe, valU’s investment is proof positive that we’re forging ahead in the right direction and signals confidence in our brand that offers unique services that are in high demand.”
“Having a leading fintech player such as valU onboard acts as a pivotal step forward in our expansion strategy by allowing us to benefit greatly from their success and giving us access to their vast network of vendors. With our companies aligned on a common vision set out to give seamless access to financial solutions and enhance financial literacy, we’re positive we will be amplifying sustainable social and economic success.”