Michael Schlein, President, & CEO, Accion

Accion Venture Lab (Accion’s seed-stage investment initiative) has announced a capital boost of $33 million to its initial capital pool of $10 million. With the launch of a new $23 million fund and an additional $10 million investment from Accion, the company’s total current capital stands at $43 million.

The new fund has been raised from a group of third-party impact and commercial investors including the likes of FMO, the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank, the Ford Foundation, MetLife Foundation, Prudential Financial, Visa Inc., etc.

With the additional capital, the company is planning to pump up investments in inclusive fintech startups, defined as ventures that leverage technology to increase the reach, quality, and affordability of financial services for the underserved at scale.

“Despite progress, three billion people still have no safe or simple way to save money, get a loan to build a business, pay a bill, or protect their health and property with insurance,” said Michael Schlein, President, and CEO of Accion.

He further added, “Fintech startups are finding new ways to provide products and services that help these underserved people. Yet often startups lack the capital and strategic support they need to grow and scale their impact. Accion Venture Lab addresses this need.”

According to the firm, inclusive fintech startups face several entrepreneurial challenges which it addresses by providing them with both capital and extensive strategic and operational support across different functional areas.

Venture Lab Managing Director Vikas Raj commented that there is a good potential for inclusive fintech startups to reach historically underserved communities while generating returns and the new pool of capital will enable the company to scale its efforts and remain at the forefront of seed-stage investing in inclusive fintech.

The Venture Lab portfolio focuses on fintech startups in insurtech, agricultural finance, digital lending, holistic MSME finance solutions, and personal financial management sectors. The company also has partnered with Quona Capital, a growth stage venture firm focused on fintech for inclusion in emerging markets.

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by Sheeba Bhagat Dawar
Market Analyst at IBS Intelligence
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