*Data updated daily at 18:00 EAT
South African fintech startup, Paymenow, has secured a R250 million (USD 14 M) debt facility from Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) for the country’s earned wage access (EWA) market. RMB is an indirect shareholder in Paymenow by virtue of its shareholding in the DNI Group and has indicated that it is looking forward to continuing to partner with Paymenow to enable the company to grow, innovate and make a positive impact on society through financial education and financial wellness.
Earned Wage Access (EWA) is a financial wellness offering to employees which allows them to access a percentage of their accrued wages before the end of their payroll cycle. It enables employees to unlock funds without the threat of costly loans, and carries the added benefit of building savings and improving financial wellness.
The fintech’s platform allows employees early access to their wages, but utilises gamification to take them on a journey to financial wellness. As they complete stages their status improves, and they get rewards by way of lower service fees. While the startup directly engages employees, its client is the employer, which enables and handles the payroll cash out to employees, and deducts the fees. Paymenow claims to be the first EWA provider to launch in Namibia and Zambia, with increasing traction in both the private and public sectors. The company plans to expand into other African countries, like Lesotho, Ghana, and Kenya.