Fintech Vietnam Boom Starts: Vietnamese Fintech Startup Raises US$28M From Goldman Sachs and Standard Charteredby Fintechnews Singapore March 17, 2016
Standard Chartered Private Equity (SCPE) and Goldman Sachs have respectively invested US$25 million and US$3 million in M_Service, a Vietnamese fintech startup and the operator of mobile digital wallet MoMo.
The deal marks the second publicly disclosed investment in M_Service by Goldman Sachs as the bank previously injected US$5.75 million into the startup back in 2013.
Prior to the deal, Standard Chartered Bank had partnered with M_Service to develop and launch in 2015 Straight2Bank, an online payment system that allows users in Vietnam to transact with each other in a cashless manner.
The service lets Standard Chartered’s corporate clients in Vietnam make payments directly into their beneficiaries’ MoMo mobile wallet via the Bank’s Straight2Bank online platform.
Phan Thanh Duc, CEO at M_Service, said that the company will use the investment to accelerate MoMo’s growth. This will include investing in the development and launch of new products and services, expanding bank and merchant connectivity, and extending the nationwide installation of Momo point-of-sale terminals at retail outlets.
Launched in June 2014, MoMo is a service of M_Service developed in partnership with Vinaphone that allows users to transfer and receive funds and pay for a wide range of services through its mobile app, available in both Apple Store and Google Play. Users can cash out their electronic credits at any of its 4,000 over-the-counters agents around the country, and the payment system is currently integrated with 24 domestic banks, as well as international payments networks including Visa, MasterCard and JCB.
In October 2015, M_Service became the first mobile payment company in Vietnam licensed by the State Bank of Vietnam. Earlier this month, it announced that users in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) will be able, starting from May 1, 2016, to pay for their water billings using the app. The new feature will support users residing in 22 different districts in HCMC.
MoMo serves over 2.5 million users in the country, processing millions of transactions on a daily basis, the company said. It has more than 1 million mobile e-wallet customers. The company expects to see its user base grow to 7 million within the next three years.
With more than half of Vietnam’s 90 million population being Internet users as of last year, and the number of mobile phone subscribers growing 26% between 2009-2013, the country is believed to be fertile ground for mobile finance.
Vietnam’s fintech ecosystem, although still in its infancy, counts more than 30 startups mostly tackling the mobile payments industry.
Last october we have named Momo as one of the hottest Vietnamese Fintech Startups.
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Featured image: Standard Chartered Bank, Hong Kong Central, via Wikimedia.