Ghanaian startup Nvoicia is helping SMEs solve short-term cash flow issues by providing an online platform that allows them to quickly and easily secure loans when dealing with credible clients.
Founded after the team, comprised of a Ghanaian, a South African and two Nigerians, met while taking part in the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) training programme in Accra, Nvoicia helps SMEs bridge funding gaps using tech, enabling them to get paid within 24 hours.
“This gives businesses the flexibility to effectively operate on almost immediate payment terms, repaying the loans at the point the invoices are paid,” chief marketing officer (CMO) Tumi Moagi told Disrupt Africa.
“We address the SMEs that are in need of working capital so that they can operate efficiently and expand their businesses.”
The startup, which secured US$100,000 in seed funding from MEST last year and was recently named winner of the Ghanaian leg of the Seedstars competition, came about after its founders engaged in research around the Ghanaian agricultural market for a startup challenge.
“While researching the market, access to finance and lack of working capital was one of the most common problems that was frequently brought up,” said Moagi.
“Unfortunately, most of these businesses don’t qualify for bank loans due to the bureaucracy involved. They, therefore, struggle to access finance and result in borrowing money from their friends and families.”
The team decided to come up with a solution that served these SMEs.
“That meant delivering a product that was convenient and fast while requiring little documentation and no collateral investment, that’s how Nvoicia was formed,” Moagi said.
Launched with a focus on agriculture, Nvoicia soon broadened its horizons.
“While embarking on market validation, demand for support came from SMEs across various industries, and we extended our reach. They told us that they were unable to expand or run their businesses efficiently due to these problems,” said Moagi.
“So far we have served agriculture, hospitality, logistics, and the construction and engineering industries. Our next move is expanding into the Nigerian market as well. We plan to develop more products that address financial inclusion for underserved SMEs, as these businesses are the source of our economic growth.”
The startup, which has so far processed financing requests worth over US$100,000, hopes to raise more funding this year in order to finance more invoices. Charging a percentage on the value of each invoice financed as a fee for its services, it is pleased with uptake so far, but looking to the future.
“In our quest to deliver a product that solves the problems of our users in entirety, we have gone through various phases to deliver on the best processes and pricing. This process never stops as we aim to ensure our customers’ businesses run more efficiently,” said Moagi.