NowPay, a Cairo-based financial wellness platform for employees has joined Y Combinator and raised fresh funds in a Pre-Series A round, it announced in a statement to MENAbytes today. It is part of Y Combinator’s ongoing Winter 2021 (YC W21) batch along with another Egyptian fintech Dayra.
The investors in NowPay’s bridge round include Global Ventures, Beco Capital, Endure Capital, Foundation Ventures, and Abderahman ElSewedy. The size of the deal was not disclosed. The startup had raised $2.1 million in a seed round last year.
Founded by Mostafa Ashour and Ahmed Sabry, NowPay enables employers to offer salary advances to their employees through its mobile app. The employers don’t pay anything for using the service, nor does the cash move from their books as NowPay finances the advances.
The solution that NowPay says is Sharia-compliant can be used by employees of corporates (that have partnered with NowPay) to request salary advances any time during the month. There’s no interest but the employees are charged a small fee for advance. The employer then deducts the advance amount and fee from employee’s salary and pays it back to NowPay.
Launched in 2019, NowPay claims to have managed over $200 million in salaries and serves clients like Sodic, Axa, ITWorx, Vezeeta, KarmSolar, and many more.
Brad Flora, Group Partner at YC and a startup angel investor in San Francisco, commenting on NowPay’s inclusion in the accelerator, said, “At YC, we help talented founders from anywhere in the world access the advice, network, and funding that Silicon Valley has to offer. With NowPay, we see dedicated founders tackling the huge problem of financial wellness in a region of the world that needs more tech investment. It was a clear decision to fund them.”
The Egyptian fintech is also eyeing expansion into some other markets of the region, it had told MENAbytes late last year.