Pakistani fintech startup and aspiring neo bank SadaPay has raised $7.2 million as it awaits regulatory approval for a live roll out.
Recharge Capital led the round with participation from existing investor Kingsway Capital, Jim Pallotta’s Raptor Group, and a roster of notable fintech angels. It brings total funding in the firm to $9.3 million since inception in 2019.
The startup is currently running a private beta programme with 1000 customers after receiving in principle approval from the State Bank of Pakistan. The company, which has attracted an impressive 200,000 prospective users to its wait list, will go live upon receiving a full Electronic Money Institution licence.
Targeting Pakistan's burgeoning middle class population, SadaPay will launch with a digital wallet, virtual debit card and numberless physical card. Sign up for the service, which features an in-app live chat function for customer support, takes less than two minutes thanks to a direct connection to Pakistan’s National Database & Registration Authority.
According to the company, Pakistan is the fifth most populous country globally with over 220 million people, but it has the third-largest unbanked population after China and India.
SadaPay’s CEO and founder, Brandon Timinsky comments: “Pakistan has a refreshingly progressive regulator, a burgeoning unbanked middle class, widespread smartphone adoption, and over 70 per cent of the population is under the age of 35. We believe that a combination of factors makes Pakistan one of the best places for emerging fintech in the world and we are excited to be a leader in that ecosystem.”
The ultimate goal for the company is to become a fully-fledged bank, says Timinsky, taking advantange of an up-and-coming framework from the SBP to issue digital banking licences.