Smile Identity, a startup that offers identification (ID) verification and Know-Your-Customer (KYC) compliance instruments for African firms, on Thursday introduced that it has raised a $7 million Series A round of funding.
The funding was as soon as jointly led by Costanoa Ventures and pan-African endeavor firm CRE Challenge Capital with the participation of diversified merchants. These contain VCs like LocalGlobe, Intercept Ventures, Future Africa, unnamed angel merchants, as effectively as existing merchants reminiscent of Khosla Affect, ValueStream Ventures, Beta Ventures, 500 Startups, and Memoir Ventures.
With the new funding, Smile Identity plans to enhance its products and services and develop across more markets. This can additionally add make stronger for more ID forms as effectively as rent more engineers and make stronger team across Africa. The funding additionally brings on John Cowgill, a accomplice at Costanoa, on the board of Smile Identity.
Smile Identity was as soon as based mostly by Worth Straub and William Bares in 2017. The corporate has since established operations in six African worldwide locations, which contain Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Ghana, Rwanda, and Uganda.
The corporate’s instrument is currently used by firms in quite a lot of sectors reminiscent of banking, fintech, lunge-sharing, worker verification, and telecommunications. Smile Identity charges its potentialities on a per-query foundation.
Its suite of about 80 clients comprises funds firms like Paystack, Paga, and Chipper Cash; digital banks Kuda and Umba and outmoded banks like Stanbic IBTC; cryptocurrency alternate platforms like Binance, Luno, and Paxful; and provide-chain firms like Twiga Foods.
Talking with TechCrunch, Straub said Smile Identity in particular helps fintechs role swish and potentially infamous users who would possibly perhaps per chance presumably hurt their firms sooner or later.
“We are an accelerant of the event of fintechs and shared economic system firms as a result of they know after they employ money on potentialities, those are accurate potentialities as a result of they own undoubtedly completed verification with us,” he said.
In accordance with recordsdata on the corporate’s web web site, Smile Identity connects to over 15 diversified ID authorities and its ID validation covers over 250 million identities across Africa.
This funding brings full investments raised by Smile Identity to $11 million. It secured a $4 million seed round in 2019.
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