Lidya, a financial services platform focused on improving access to credit for MSMEs in Africa, has raised USD 6.9 Mn in Series A funding.
This round was led by Omidyar Network, Silicon Valley-based impact investment firm along with participation from existing investors Accion Venture Lab and Newid Capital. The latest funding round also saw participation from Alitheia Capital (via the uMunthu growth fund), Bamboo Capital Partners, and Tekton Ventures.
Globally, MSMEs are one of the most reliable drivers of economic development, innovation, and employment, and yet access to finance is frequently identified as a critical barrier to growth for these businesses. 40 percent of MSMEs in emerging markets are underserved when it comes to access to credit-representing an estimated USD 5.2 Tn credit gap. In Nigeria, where Lidya is based, the IFC estimates that there is an MSME credit gap of at least $25 billion.
Businesses can apply for loans ranging from USD 500 to USD 50 k, without the need to go to a physical location, present audited financials and projections, or provide collateral. Repayment schedules and fees are agreed on upfront and with total transparency.
Founded in 2016 by Tunde Kehinde and Ercin Eksin, Lidya claims to have made over 1,500 business loans to help MSMEs in farming, hospitality, logistics, retail, real estate, technology, and health to get the capital they need to grow their operations.