Nigerian fintech startup Pivo has closed a US$2 million seed funding round to upgrade existing products and build new ones to improve transaction management and payment reconciliation for supply chains.
Formed by Ijeoma Akwiwu and Nkiru Amadi-Emina in July 2021 and launched in public beta in September, Pivo is targeted at any business that deals with the import, export, manufacture, distribution and retail of FMCG, logistics and haulage, and clearing and forwarding.
Pivo began life with three main products. Pivo Capital, its flagship product, gives SMEs access to loans worth as much as US$50,000. Pivo Finance, meanwhile, offers customers access to a digital-only banking solution, while Pivo Plus, offers access to insurance, corporate compliance and tax regulation support.
The US$2 million seed funding round comes from Precursor Ventures, Vested World, Y Combinator, FoundersX and Mercy Corp Ventures, and will be used to upgrade existing products and build new ones. The company also plans to establish its presence outside its Lagos office, expand operations to East Africa, and grow its team.
“After our pre-seed raise of US$550,000 early in Q1 of this year, we launched a new product, Pivo Business, with features that supply chain SMEs can use to achieve better cash flow,” Amadi-Emina said. “The transaction volume of Pivo Business accounts grew by over 400 per cent between April and September. With this funding, we intend to build on existing products and develop solutions for supply chain anchors.”
Daniel Block, investment principal at Mercy Corps Ventures, said his company believed the Pivo founders’ deep logistics industry expertise and commitment to unattended supply chain SMEs would enable the startup to rapidly carve out a deep moat in the competitive fintech lending space.
“As Pivo launches additional products to graduate from a pure fintech lender to a full-fledged financial services platform, we are excited to see the company deliver a full suite of financial services specifically designed for the needs of the unattended supply-chain sector SMEs they serve,” he said.