Microlender Tala raises $145m to move into savings and crypto

Microlender Tala raises $145m to move into savings and crypto

Microlender to the underbanked Tala has raised $145 million in Series E financing to fund a host of new services, including crypto.

Upstart led the round, with participation from the Stellar Development Foundation, Kindred Ventures, the J Safra Group, IVP, Revolution Growth, Lowercase Capital, and PayPal Ventures.

Founded in 2014, California-based Tala uses customers' mobile phone data to build credit profiles and make lending decisions. It has now delivered $2.7 billion in credit to more than six million customers across Kenya, the Philippines, Mexico, and India, with 12,000 new users signing up every day.

Flush with new investment, the company now wants to become a complete financial platform for the global underbanked, adding tools to save and manage money as well as an expanded range of credit options, including longer-term loans and credit that can be configured to match customers’ income cycles.

In addition, Tala is tapping the Stellar network to build a crypto product for emerging markets. Earlier this year, the company said it was working with Visa to offer payment cards linked to its digital wallet, giving customers a way to spend against their USDC balance.

Shivani Siroya, CEO, Tala, says: "This new investment will accelerate our path to becoming the primary financial account for the global underbanked and helping millions more people make progress in their financial lives."

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