The Omidyar Network and ACCION International have announced a $3.2 million investment in Mobile Transactions International, a Zambia-based company that leverages mobile technology and an agent network to enable financial transactions across the Zambian economy.
Mobile Transactions will use the investment, the first venture capital deal involving a Zambian tech start up, to develop its leadership tem and technology platform to underserved organizations and base-of-the-pyramid consumers in Zambia and other emerging markets. The $4 million investment also includes $500,000 in converted debt funding from Mennonite Economic Development Associates.
As part of the agreement, Arjuna Costa, director of investments at Omidyar Network and Monica Brand, fund manager for ACCION's Frontier Investments Group, will join Mobile Transaction's board. Prior to the investment, Frontier Investments had provided the company with bridge financing as well as strategic support in market expansion.
"Omidyar Network believes that Mobile Transactions demonstrates the potential of a 'cashless Africa' to transform the way people and organizations transact in emerging markets," said Costa. "We are proud to support entrepreneurs who have demonstrated a tireless commitment to building a model and products from the ground up that can scale across borders and have a pan-African footprint."