In January, Alex wrote this list of Africa fintech startups to watch in 2021. One of those startups is Mono, an Application Programme Interface (API) which helps companies and third-party developers to retrieve the bank account information of customers.
If APIs seem a little confusing to you, here’s a not boring way of understanding them and why they’re such big deals-- so big that Visa offered $5bn to buy Plaid, another API startup.
Mono helps companies collect bank statements from their customers with no coding. It’s the sort of interface that is super useful if you’re a digital lender looking to use a user’s bank statement to determine their capacity to take loans.
The startup’s offering has proved interesting to investors. In September 2020, it raised a $500,000 pre-investment round and it has now received more funding.
What it means : Both companies claim they’re looking out for their users. Apple has said it is making the move to protect user privacy, and Facebook has argued that the opt-in requirement will hurt small businesses that rely on targeted advertising for sales.
Mono has now been admitted to Y Combinator’s Winter 2021 batch and will receive $125,000 in seed funding with the possibility of follow up funding in March. The six-month-old company has big ambitions; with a pan-African expansion on the cards as well as a push to become a global company.
The magic number : Abdul Hassan, Mono’s CEO said the company processes 5 million datasets per hour. When you consider that Mono partners with 16 financial institutions in Nigeria and has a little over a hundred businesses like Carbon, Renmoney, Flutterwave and Indicina using its platform, it’s not far-fetched.