OneLoad, a Lahore-based FinTech startup, raised $11 million in Series A funding from Sarmayacar, Shorooq Partners, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Strategic Investment Fund, and Systems Limited.
Elevator pitch: Empowering micro-retailers to serve the unbanked.
Make me care: In Pakistan, over 100 million people lack access to banking services, making it the third-largest unbanked country in the world.
OneLoad has a unique solution that empowers micro-retailers to provide banking services to the unbanked.
It’s a win-win for both the micro-retailer and their customers.
The micro-retailer generates more revenue and can offer their customers additional services.
Tell me more: OneLoad offers two different kinds of products and services – digital and banking.
Digital products include mobile top-ups, internet packages, media, and entertainment services.
And banking services include transferring money, utility payments, digital wallet deposits and withdrawals, and government-to-person payments.
According to the press statement, OneLoad claims that 40,000 agents handle about $100 million in transactions annually.
You should know: OneLoad was founded in 2014 by Muhammad Yar Hiraj and is a product of EP Systems Limited, a subsidiary of Systems Limited.
It has also received in-principle approval from the State Bank of Pakistan to operate as an electronic money institution.
According to DAWN, it has raised $18m in funding, including $11 million in Series A.
$400,000 came in the form of a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2021. Rest came from Systems Limited and International Finance Corporation (IFC) in the form of seed funding and grant.
Zoom out: With this funding, OneLoad plans to expand its digital ecosystem for rural merchants, enable low-income consumers to use digital transactions more frequently, and provide additional financial services to the underbanked population.