Nigerian fintech startup, Zone, secures $8.5 million seed funding for blockchain-powered payment infrastructure expansion

Fintech startup, Zone, has secured an $8.5 million seed funding to expand its blockchain-powered payment infrastructure. The Nigerian startup aims to enhance its network coverage domestically and establish connections with more banks and financial services companies.

The funding round was led by TLcom Capital and Flourish Ventures, with additional investment from Digital Currency Group, Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures, Alter Global, and Endeavor Catalyst. Zone, a part of the Appzone Group, was founded in 2008 and rebranded in 2022 to focus on blockchain-powered payment infrastructure.

Obi Emetarom, the CEO and co-founder of Zone, expressed optimism about the funding and highlighted the growing interest from investors, signaling trust in the fintech brand and excitement about reshaping payment infrastructure in Africa. The startup aims to leverage the support and expertise of its investors to accelerate its mission of enabling real-time payments and connecting monetary stores of value within and across geographical borders.

Zone has positioned itself as Africa’s first regulated blockchain network for payments and has already onboarded over 15 of Africa’s major banks and fintech companies. With the backing of Flourish Ventures, Zone is poised to benefit from global perspectives, industry networks, and extensive fintech expertise, facilitating expansion into new markets.

Ameya Upadhyay, a partner at Flourish Ventures, emphasized that the fundraise represents a significant leap that will revolutionize reliability, speed, and cost efficiency in payment transactions, both at ATMs and online. The potential for Zone’s technology to drive payment innovation globally was also highlighted, indicating the startup’s ambitions beyond the African market.


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