Duplo, a Nigerian startup on the rise, which is focused on digitizing payment flows for B2B companies, was able to raise US$1.3 million pre-seed round as it went on to confirm that it will be taking part in the W22 batch of the Silicon Valley-based Y Combinator accelerator.
Duplo, which came into existence in September 2021 by two founders Tunde Akinnuwa and YeleOyekola, will allow B2B companies to automate their payment inflows, reconcile at scale, and develop a streamlined experience for business clients, which could possibly include https://www.kingjohnnie.info/en/.
Businesses will be able to make all their payments services needs on the Duplo platform which will also provide financial services to their customers considering the startup is being described as a financial operating system for B2B companies.
The US$1.3 million pre-seed round was reported to have been led by early-stage pan-African VC firm Oui Capital along with MyAsia VC, Foutterwave CEO Olugbenga "GB" Agbool, and Mono CEO Abdul Hassan. An investor was found in Y Combinator tight after Duplo was named as an official participant in its latest programme, which is set to host several other African startups.
The funds being raised will be used to improve Duplo's product while developing its tech to build out its sales capacity before it can freely enter other business sectors. The startup, which is active in the FMCG retail space, will also be targeting markets like travel, agriculture, beverages, and B2B marketplaces like best online slots real money.
Speaking to the media, Oyekola said: “We are trying to make cash obsolete in Africa where lots of businesses in the distribution space heavily transact in cash for obvious reasons. We are focused on distributors, merchants and aggregators to stop the use of cash in this value chain because everyone knows how expensive cash is and how difficult it is to move with issues around theft and fraud.
“Our value proposition is we help businesses automate, embed and launch payment products. Basically, inflows or outflows, automatic reconciliations for businesses and embedding payments into marketplaces. And then we also have businesses that want to provide BNPL services to smaller businesses.”
Principal at Oui Capital, Peter Oriaifo confirmed how delighted he was to support Duplo which is working to build a scalable B2B payments platform for the African market.
He said: “We believe that with the proliferation of commerce in Africa, there’s an emerging need for solutions such as Duplo’s that help abstract away complexities around payments.”