Sparkle, a Lagos, Nigeria-based mobile-first digital bank that provides financial, lifestyle and business support services to Nigerians across the globe, raised $3.1m in seed funding.
Backers included Leadway Assurance, Trium Networks and a number of Nigerian HNIs.
The round follows a previous friends and family pre-Seed round totalling $2m, bringing total funding to $5.1m.
The company intends to use the funds to scale the platform’s talent teams across engineering, financial risk and marketing departments and invest in its automated back end processes and digital infrastructure.
Led by Uzoma Dozie, Founder and CEO, Sparkle is a lifestyle and financial ecosystem providing current accounts and savings accounts to Nigeria’s retailers, SMEs and individuals. Users are able to open an account via a Smartphone, without the need for documentation or in-person / banking hall verification. The platform also has a Visa card function for users to make in-person or digital payments. The company has also secured partnerships with Visa, Network International, PriceWaterHouse Cooper Nigeria and secured a Microfinance Bank licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
In April 2021, Sparkle launched its business platform, Sparkle Business, targeted at the new generation of digital first MSMEs and SMEs in Nigeria, with features such as Inventory and Invoice Management, a Payment Gateway Service, Tax Advisory/Calculations and Payroll/Employee Management. The system requires no documentation to open an account – to register individuals require a personal Sparkle account, Tax Identification Number [TIN], and an email address connected to their TIN.