Tyme raises $77.8 million to fuel global expansion

Tyme, a global digital bank and the parent of South Africa's TymeBank has secured $77.8 million from Norrsken22 and Blue Earth Capital, as part of its pre-Series C capital raise.

This comes as the group's South African flagship, TymeBank, celebrates its seven million customer milestone this month

Along with the two new shareholders - Norrsken22, an African focused tech growth fund, and Blue Earth Capital ("BlueEarth"), an independent global impact investment firm – Tyme’s shareholders have invested a total of $77.8 million, with Tencent increasing its shareholding to become Tyme's third largest shareholder.

The funds will deepen its operations in South Africa and the Philippines as well as for future expansion in Southeast Asia.

"We are  delighted to invest in Tyme. The company offers a unique product with huge customer appeal, which has led to fast and sustained growth. We have analysed a lot of fintechs from across the continent,  and Tyme set itself apart with its impressive growth, its differentiated product, and its unique ability  to reach and serve new customer groups," says Natalie Kolbe, Managing Partner at Norrsken22.

Tyme has a revenue run rate of over $100 million per annum, per a statement shared with Bendada.com. The business [across the two markets] is growing at a pace of 300,000 new customers a month. The digital bank currently serves over seven million customers since it was launched in February 2019.

"We are delighted to welcome  Norrsken22 and Blue Earth Capital to the group of high-calibre investors who have bought into Tyme's  growth story and its mission to democratise financial services by lowering cost and other barriers to  access," says Coen Jonker, Co-founder of Tyme and TymeBank CEO.

Growth at Tyme's South African flagship, TymeBank

TymeBank’s hybrid model of digital banking and physical service has made banking accessible to South Africans across the economic spectrum. The bank has well established partnerships with national retailers Pick n Pay and Boxer, leading fashion retailer TFG (The Foschini Group), as well as the largest church in South Africa, the Zion Christian Church.

In 2022, TymeBank acquired Retail Capital, which has already provided more than 43 000 business owners in South Africa with over R5.5 billion in working capital, making it the largest SME funder of its kind in the sector. TymeBank says it continues to make a real difference in the lives of consumers with its low-cost banking offering, high  levels of customer satisfaction, and the successful introduction of several products and services.

According to David Moore, Principal of Funds and Co-Investments at BlueEarth: "We invested in Tyme Group thanks to our long-standing partnership with Apis Partners who look to build on their mission to generate attractive commercial returns alongside key priorities of reduced inequalities and greater financial inclusion. BlueEarth is excited about backing Tyme’s innovative, retail partnership model which enables affordable access to first-class banking products to all consumers, including those most vulnerable or living in remote locations.”

Work continues with interested investors, with Series C expected to close later in the year. Tyme completed its Series B in December 2021. Led by existing shareholders, the capital raise brought in a total of $180 million. African Rainbow Capital (ARC) remains Tyme’s majority shareholder.

"We remain excited and committed to further creating value in building a global  digital banking portfolio with our fellow shareholders and partners and we welcome the new investors  who have participated in this raise," Dr Patrice Motsepe, Founder and  Chairman of ARC, said in the statement.

Tyme and TymeBank: Any difference?

Tyme is group of companies headquartered in Singapore, it is the parent of South African fintech TymeBank which was launched in February 2019. Two years ago, the digital bank secured a ~$109 million investment from investors in the U.K. and Philippines to drive its South African growth.

As we earlier stated, TymeBank now has seven million customers from 2.8 million customers that it had in February 2021.

Following the success of TymeBank, Tyme—the parent lauched another digital bank in the Phillippines GoTyme in October 2022 modelling on South Africa's TymeBank, and this imported concept has progressed financial access as it offers Filipino consumers quality, affordable and accessible financial service  solutions.

The group’s global footprint includes a product development and engineering hub in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, which employs a team of skilled people, including over three hundred engineers. Tyme's global headquarters in Singapore house leads its strategy, business development, data, analytics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) functions.