Zambian microfinance startup Lupiya has raised a US$1 million funding round to help it continue to scale and roll out its services that ensure Zambians, especially women, are able to participate in the economy through its financial inclusion strategy.
Lupiya is a branchless, digital microfinance platform that leverages technology to make the process of borrowing simpler and easier for people and businesses located across the country.
The funding comes from Enygma Ventures, a ZAR100 million (US$6.8 million) fund launched late last year with a focus on investing in women entrepreneurs in the SADC region.
“We are thrilled with this investment, it has come at the right time in the interesting financial climate many businesses are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Lupiya chief executive officer (CEO) and co-founder Evelyn Kaingu.
The investment will enable Lupiya to continue ensuring Zambians can easily access financial services when they need them. With around 70 per cent of Zambians lacking the necessary collateral to secure a loan, the startup works to close this gap.
“We are excited to partner with Lupiya to make an extraordinary difference to the lives of particularly female Zambian business owners, who run small and medium sized businesses,” said Sarah Dusek, managing partner and co-founder of Enygma Ventures. “We believe the access to capital is a key strategic initiative to enable job creation, enterprise stimulus and in turn economic growth.”