In its recent Series A funding round, Vietnamese fintech platform MFast has successfully raised US$6 million. Wavemaker Partners, an early-stage venture capital firm with offices in Los Angeles and Singapore, led the funding. New investors include Headline Asia, based in Tokyo, and Finnoventure Fund I.
MFast operates under the umbrella of Vietnam-based startup DigiPay. The platform aims to address the financial services gap in rural areas of Vietnam, where a significant portion of the population lacks access to banking services due to the concentration of physical branches in urban centers.
Established in 2017 by twin brothers Phan Thanh Long and Phan Thanh Vinh, MFast has rapidly expanded its footprint to cover all 63 cities in Vietnam. The fintech platform has effectively built a robust network encompassing over 160,000 agents nationwide.
This initiative responds to the reality that around 70% of Vietnam’s rural population faces limited access to reliable financial services, often being compelled to resort to risky transactions within the gray and black markets.
To combat this issue, MFast’s agents serve as crucial intermediaries, connecting rural customers with trusted financial institutions, thereby facilitating the introduction and dissemination of essential financial products.
Krungsri Finnovate, the Thai venture capital firm managing Finnoventure Fund I, is pivotal in this funding round. As the corporate venture arm of Thailand’s fifth-largest financial group, Bank of Ayudhya (Krungsri), Krungsri Finnovate underscores the significance of this investment in strengthening MFast’s ties with Krungsri’s consumer finance business in Vietnam, known as SHB Finance.
The infusion of capital from the recent funding round will propel MFast toward its ambitious expansion goals. The startup intends to leverage these newfound resources to extend its reach beyond Vietnam’s borders, aiming for an international presence by 2024.
MFast plans to capitalize on its fresh funding to not only amplify its existing operations within Vietnam but also to venture into international markets. The company looks at the Philippines as the initial destination for this global expansion, with plans to establish a presence in the country commencing as early as the next year.
“Our next big steps include fostering collaboration to design exclusive financial products for each and every customer segment, as well as gearing up for expansion to the Philippines in 2024,” MFast CEO Long Phan stated in their official release.
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