Chinese venture capitalists invest $50m to drive OPay's Nigeria expansion
OPay will use the new capital to strengthen the company’s position in Nigeria and expand to more African markets.
Beijing-headquartered venture capital firms, Sequoia China and Source Code Capital, are among the lead investors in the $50 million funding raised by OPay, a one-stop mobile-based platform for payment, transportation as well as food and grocery delivery services. In a statement released on Wednesday by Opera – the Norwegian browser company and parent company of OPay – other investors in the round of funding are Singapore's GSR Ventures, New York-based IDG Capital, which starting its first investment in China in 1993, and Opera Limited.
Launched in August 2018 as a mobile payment service, OPay has grown daily transaction volumes to over $5 million and had more than 40,000 active agents as of June 2019. Incubated by Opera, OPay is one of the fastest growing companies in Nigeria. It recently launched motorbike ridesharing service, ORide, and food delivery service, OFood.
“OPay has successfully built a leading mobile payment business in Nigeria in a short period of time," said Qingsheng Zheng, Partner at Sequoia China. "We are excited to be part of its continued growth, as it provides access to better mobile banking services for Nigeria’s 200 million population, and expands into new areas.”
Opera, which was acquired in 2016 by a consortium of Chinese investors, said, “By incubating OPay and supporting the company through its rapid acceleration, Opera has also demonstrated its ability to leverage its brand and consumer reach to create attractive, fast-growing businesses on the African continent." According to the company's Chairman and CEO, Yahui Zhou, "We are highly pleased by the team’s results and are excited to continue supporting OPay as the journey continues.”
Opera has been expanding its reach in Africa with new products, including the fintech offering. The company said at the end of the first quarter of 2019, there were nearly 120 million people across Africa and more than 350 million worldwide using its products. OPay will use the new capital to strengthen the company’s position in Nigeria and expand to more African markets.
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