Nigeria’s multi-merchant rewards platform ThankUCash has raised $5.3m in seed funding to expand its operations across Africa. The platform looks to expand in 3 major cities in Nigeria (Lagos, Abuja, and Port-Hacourt) then scale its operations and expand to Ghana and Kenya.
The seed round was co-led by 500 Global and Unicorn Growth Capital with participation from Expert Dojo, Predictive VC, SaaS growth Ventures, Betatron Hong kong, Accelerex Holding, Andrew Dell (former CEO of HSBC), Craig Fenton (Director, Strategy & Operations At Google), among others.
Co-founded in 2018 by Simeon Ononobi (CEO), Suraj Supekar (CTO), Madonna Ononobi (COO) and Harshal Gandole (Senior VP, Engr.), ThankUCash offers cashbacks on purchases and deals from thousands of merchants which in turn helps merchants retain customer loyalty, increase revenue and grow.
The Nigerian firm will use Aaron Tindiseega to lead its East African expansion. He’s vastly experienced in building tech startups across emerging markets with an enviable working history in the African banking and tech industry. Aaron worked as the Country Manager of Uber in Uganda until last year, he’s also worked at Standard Chartered Bank and Stanbic IBTC. For the Ghana expansion, Kiki Anku will lead the charge, having worked at Apple and possessing a wealth of experience in the startup world.
According to ThankUCash CEO Simeon Ononobi, the funds will also be used to introduce two new products.
“We are expanding our products to remittances in all our markets and a ‘Buy Now Pay Later’ infrastructure to power the industry,” he said.
The Nigerian firm will give the infrastructure which will connect merchants with credit/loan facilities such that customers can pay directly for goods and services through the ThankUCash super App, with loans from credit facilities.
“The technology is such that we have our machines in stores. So as customers request loans, we generate a code for it, customers input it into the POS machine and the merchant gets credited directly. The code can only be used in the store chosen and only for the loan amount requested, such that at the end of the day the customer is buying straight from the merchants. We’re opening this infrastructure to everybody and want to actually give that platform to loan companies,” he explained.