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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 September 2018

Fintech start-up Monami Tech closes $1m funding round

Investment will be used to accelerate expansion in the region

Number of FinTech players in MENA is expected to go beyond 250 by 2020. Bloomberg

UAE-based financial technology start-up Monami Tech closed a seed funding round of $1 million, the first of additional financing rounds that will help the company expand across the Arabian Gulf region.

The money raised is the first tranche of a total series A round that is expected to raise over $3m and will close over the next 90 days. The lead investor is PGH Holdings, an investment vehicle led by American payments innovator Henry Helgeson, the founder and chief executive of Massachusetts-based Cayan, a provider of payment technologies and merchant services.

“Our US-based investors and strategic partners will play a key role in helping Monami Tech achieve its strategic objectives,” said Ammar Afif, founder and managing director of Monami Tech, which specialises in helping financial services companies leverage the benefits of digital technology to enhance customer experience.

In the Middle East region, funding available to fintech start-ups has surged by 270 per cent in 2017 alone, according to Wamda, a platform of integrated programs that aims to accelerate entrepreneurship ecosystems throughout the Mena region. It is also expecting the number of fintech players to go beyond 250 in 2020.

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“We are excited to partner with the management team of Monami Tech as they try to innovate and disrupt the instant lending landscape,” said Paul Vienneau, chief technology officer at Cayan, who will take a board seat on behalf of PGH as part of this investment.

Monami's expansion includes Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, the Arab world's largest economy.

“Last year was spent primarily in investing in product development and building our management team, including opening up a development centre in Bangalore, India. This latest investment boost will fast track our expansion plans,” said Mr Afif.

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