Tyme rakes in $77.8m to expand coverage

Tyme, the parent company of South African digital bank TymeBank, has successfully raised $77.8 million in its pre-Series C capital raise. Norrsken22, an African-focused tech growth fund, and Blue Earth Capital, an independent global impact investment firm, joined as new shareholders, while existing shareholder Tencent increased its stake, becoming Tyme’s third-largest shareholder. The funds will be used to expand operations in South Africa, the Philippines, and potential future expansion in Southeast Asia. TymeBank recently reached a significant milestone of serving seven million customers since its launch in 2019.

The hybrid model of TymeBank, which combines digital banking and physical services, has proven to be successful in providing accessible banking to South Africans across different economic backgrounds. The bank has formed partnerships with major retailers like Pick n Pay, Boxer, and TFG (The Foschini Group), as well as the largest church in South Africa, the Zion Christian Church. In 2022, TymeBank acquired Retail Capital, the largest SME funder in its sector, providing working capital to over 43,000 business owners.

The investment from Blue Earth Capital aligns with its mission to reduce inequalities and promote financial inclusion. The firm sees value in Tyme’s innovative retail partnership model, which offers affordable access to high-quality banking products, including vulnerable individuals and those residing in remote locations. Tyme aims to continue delivering low-cost banking services, introducing new products and services, and maintaining high levels of customer satisfaction.

As Tyme progresses with its capital raise, with Series C expected to conclude later this year, the company remains committed to building a global digital banking portfolio. The success of TymeBank in South Africa has paved the way for the launch of GoTyme, a digital bank based on the TymeBank model, in the Philippines in 2022. Tyme’s global operations span Singapore, with its headquarters and functions such as strategy, business development, and data analytics, and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, which houses a product development and engineering hub employing a skilled team of over 300 engineers.

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