Blockchain payment startup, Bitmama has raised additional $1.65m pre-seed fund bringing its total to $2m following its $350,000 initial pre-seed championed by Launch Africa Ventures, Unicorn Growth Capital, Adaverse and Flori Ventures in October 2021.
The new round of investors included the ones from the initial pre-seed round and Tekedia Capital, GreenHouse Capital, ODBA, Five35 Ventures, Chrysalis Capital, Enrich Africa, Thrive Africa, Angellist Ventures and angel investors including Rene Reinsberg, Marek Olszewski and Honey Ogundeyi.
Located in Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya, the startup aims to redefine financial transactions by incorporating blockchain technology. The company which started as a WhatsApp group in 2017 now has two major products; Bitmama exchange, a crypto exchange platform that allows users to access virtual assets formally and explore other use cases, including buying, selling, swapping crypto and peer-to-peer transactions and Changera, a social payment solution built for people who know nothing or little – allowing them to use stablecoins to send over $10,000 monthly across the world via virtual cards.
According to a statement shared by the company, the pre-seed would be used to expand its operational presence, strengthen its team, consolidate its product offerings and plot market penetration across Africa while rapidly scaling new use cases for cryptocurrency within the continent.
“Bitmama has made a number of strides in the past year. We’ve rolled out two products, both of which are fast closing in on 100,000 users across the African market and recording impressive daily active users across our range of product offerings despite the market dynamics,” CEO, Ruth Iselema said.
“We are building Africa’s most user-friendly, innovative blockchain company, and we are glad to have the backing of seasoned investors and partners who have walked similar turfs. We are privileged to learn from their blended experiences across corporate and blockchain business verticals,” she added.
Launch Africa’s Managing Partner, Janade Du Plessis said the fund the partnership with Bitmama would allow more people to use digital assets and cryptocurrencies on the continent.
“As a prominent Pan-African VC fund, we see our partnership with Bitmama as a way to truly allow all Africans with the ability to trade and manage cryptocurrencies, and digital assets conveniently and universally, creating a significant impact on allowing more people to trade and transact across Africa.”
“This is something that we specifically value in our fund and what Bitmama in particular delivers,” he noted.
“Being a leading female-focused VC fund, we at Five35 Ventures look forward to helping Ruth and her dynamic team scale Bitmama, especially seeing the growth of Changera, the remittance platform that allows all Africans to transact internationally at much cheaper rates than established remittance companies in the market,” said Hema Vallabh, a founding partner for Five35 Ventures.