Along with marketplace lending, the payment sector continues to be the hottest areas for investing among venture capital firms. With high fees related to cross currency payments and person to person transfers, the sector has attracted startups that aim to reduce expenses and increase efficiency through the use of technology.
Continuing the trend of investment capital flowing into the payment industry, Singapore-based Fastacash announced that it has closed $15 million in funding. Led by Rising Dragon Singapore and including investment from Life.SREDA, UVM 2 Venture Investments LP, and existing investors, the deal is one of the largest Series B funding rounds for a Singapore-based fintech company.
A provider of technology to enable payments using mobile social networks, Fastacash has now raised a total of $23.5 million. With the new cash, Fastacash will be using the funding to help them with their international expansion, including in the US, UK, Middle East and European markets.
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Embedding their mobile payment system to work with social networks such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Twitter, the firm has been partnering with banks, payment providers, mobile firms and remittance companies to broaden usage of their offering. A recent partnership was with Axis Bank of India which tapped Fastacash’s payment technology to launch PingPay, a social payment product.
In regards to social payments, Fastacash is far from the only firm operating in the space. Also marketing applications for social payments is GetGems, which has created such a system using blockchain technology. Differentiating Fastacash, is that they are creating the underlying technology that can be licensed for use by other firms, allowing them to launch mobile social payments apps to their customers. As a result, for small and medium sized financial firms without large budgets for technology projects, Fastacash provides a cost effective solution.
Commenting publicly about the appeal of Fastacash, Eric Schaer, CEO at Rising Dragon Singapore, stated, “The global proliferation of social networks, and the rise in mobile penetration presents tremendous opportunities, particularly across emerging markets. Fastacash is leading the way with innovation that is making social payments a reality. We see tremendous potential in Fastacash to transform the way consumers transfer money, airtime and other forms of value.”