Termii, an African communications-as-a-service startup has raised $1.4 Million in seed funds. 50% of the round was co-led by both Kepple Africa Ventures and Future Africa while other participants include Aidi Ventures, Remapped Ventures, Nama Ventures, RallyCap Ventures, Assembly Investors, Acuity Ventures, and Kairos Angels.
Notable Industry Angels also joined the round such as Eric Idiahi (Verod Capital), Tayo Oviousu (Paga), Josh Jones (Dream Host), Diran Otegbade, MyAsiaVC, and Ham Serunjogi (Chipper Cash)
The seed financing came in a year after the startup graduated from the YCombinator Winter 2020 Batch. Cofounded by Gbolade Emmanuel and Awe Ayomide, the company has helped thousands of businesses across Africa use messaging channels to effectively engage, verify, and authenticate their customers’ transactions.
Positioning itself as serving Africa’s fast-growing technology ecosystem with a focus on financial technology companies, Termii through its API-based communication infrastructure powers over 500 African FinTech’s and more than a thousand other companies such as Piggyvest, Ulesson, Yassir, Voguepay, Helium Health, and a host of other businesses across Africa.
According to its Co-founder & CEO Gbolade Emmanuel, Termii grew its messaging transactions by 1000% and experienced a 400% increase in its ARR during the pandemic in 2020. The startup has continued to grow its revenue base by over 60% monthly, due to the surge in online financial transactions which to date makes up for 68% of the company’s total messaging transactions.
Playing in a $3.6 Billion B2C communications market which is estimated to grow 6% annually, Termii runs a B2B2C model and leverages a virtual wallet system that is tied to a bank account. This makes it easy for its customers to make payments to the platform using mobile money, bank transfer, and credit cards.
The startup charges its customers’ wallets on a per-message basis, as well as on every successful customer verification made towards customers’ contacts. It runs a developer-first approach while also providing dashboard tools for sales and marketing teams within companies who decide to run non-API-based engagement campaigns.
Gbolade says that the company plans to expand physically in the coming months to North-Africa with a physical presence in Algeria. According to him, in Q1 of 2021 Nigeria accounted for 76% of the company’s messaging transactions, while Algeria currently accounts for 15% which is growing steadily each month. Other countries like Egypt, Ghana, Morocco, Gambia, Sierra Leone, the US, Canada, and the UK take the other distribution of its traffic.
With this new fundraising, the company plans to tap into the wealth of experience from some of its new investors who themselves have also taken local companies into expansion phases like Eric Idiahi of Verod Capital and Tayo Oviousu of PAGA who recently expanded to Ethiopia.
It also plans to launch its offering into two-way messaging across Africa, both for SMS and WhatsApp for enhanced interaction between businesses and their customers.