BY: Sibahle Malinga, ITWeb Senior News Journalist.

Tyme Global, the international arm of digital-only bank TymeBank, has secured two new international investments, as part of its pre-series C capital raise launched in January.

According to a statement, the financial injection will further expand the bank’s operations in SA and the Philippines, as well as future expansion in Southeast Asia, and a partial share buy-back.

Tyme’s shareholders have invested a total of $77.8 million, including the two new shareholders − Norrsken22, an Africa-focused tech growth fund, and Blue Earth Capital, an independent global impact investment firm.

TymeBank, which targets underbanked and underserviced South Africans through low and transparent bank fees, expanded to the Philippines in 2022, with the launch of GoTyme in partnership with Filipino conglomerate, Gokongwei Group.

As the group accelerates its foray into the disruptive digital banking space globally, African Rainbow Capital (ARC) remains Tyme Global’s majority shareholder.

Dr Patrice Motsepe, founder and chairman of ARC, says: “We remain excited and committed to further creating value in building a global digital banking portfolio with our fellow shareholders and partners, and we welcome the new investors who have participated in this raise.”

In SA, the new investment is expected to see TymeBank strengthen its position locally, to better contend with digital-only competitors Discovery Bank and Bank Zero, which launched publicly in August 2021.

Having launched formally in February 2019, TymeBank says it continues to on-board an average of 200 000 new customers per month, and reached its seven million customer milestone on 12 May. The bank says it has a 70% 30-day account activity rate.

The branchless bank has partnerships with national retailers Pick n Pay and Boxer, fashion retailer TFG (The Foschini Group), as well as the largest church in SA, the Zion Christian Church.

In March, ARC announced it had pumped close to R2 billion into TymeBank, to further expand the bank’s offerings across the country.

In August, TymeBank reached an agreement with Retail Capital and its shareholders to acquire 100% of the fintech SME funder’s shares, subject to regulatory approval.

Retail Capital is a South African provider of alternative business funding to small and medium businesses.

According to the bank, the acquisition has already provided more than 43 000 business owners in SA with over R5.5 billion in working capital.

Coen Jonker, co-founder of Tyme and TymeBank CEO, comments: “We are delighted to welcome Norrsken22 and Blue Earth Capital to the group of high-calibre investors who have bought into Tyme’s growth story, and its mission to democratise financial services.”

GoTyme in the Philippines was modelled on SA’s TymeBank, and this imported concept has progressed financial access in the country, offering Filipino consumers affordable and accessible financial service solutions, it says.

The group’s global footprint includes a product development and engineering hub in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, which employs a team of skilled people, including over 300 engineers.

Tyme says its global headquarters in Singapore leads its strategy, business development, data, analytics and artificial intelligence functions.

David Moore, principal of funds and co-investments at Blue Earth Capital, states: “We invested in Tyme Group thanks to our long-standing partnership with Apis Partners, who look to build on their mission to generate attractive commercial returns alongside key priorities of reduced inequalities and greater financial inclusion.

“Blue Earth is excited about backing Tyme’s innovative, retail partnership model, which enables affordable access to first-class banking products to all consumers, including those most vulnerable or living in remote locations.”


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