Mansa plans EUR 15m-EUR 20m funding round – CEO

11 June 2021 - 05:20 am UTC

by Ketaki Gokhale in Paris

Mansa, a French micro-lender for freelancers and gig workers, plans to raise a EUR 15m-EUR 20m equity round, co-founder and CEO Ali Rami told Mergermarket

 

All of the company’s existing investors will re-invest in the new round, which it aims to close at approximately year-end, Rami said. It is seeking additional funding from international VCs who can help it scale, participate in larger rounds and possibly even provide debt, he added. Investors in the round will receive a 20-27% stake in Mansa, he said.

 

Mansa is looking to build its balance sheet, enabling it to raise more debt, he said, and will raise between EUR 80m-EUR 100m in debt concurrently to the equity raise. It will also use the funds to hire additional software and data science specialists, he added.

 

Management is conducting the fundraising internally and is not looking to appoint a financial advisor.

 

While Rami declined to disclose the company’s revenues, he said Mansa is issuing EUR 1m-EUR 2m in loans a month. It expects to issue EUR 15m-EUR 20m in loans this year, and aims for EUR 100m in loan volume in 2022, and EUR 300m in 2023, he said.

 

Mansa has raised EUR 20m so far, including a EUR 2m equity pre-seed round, and a EUR 6m equity round it closed in March, as reported. Participants in the March round included British VC fund Anthemis Group and Founders Future. The company has also raised EUR 12m in debt, as reported.

 

Mansa’s platform gives freelancers and others without recurring income access to loans they can use to invest in their businesses, or as a cash advance if their income is cyclical or lumpy, Rami said. It also has a white-label product that enables banks to make their own lending offers, he said, adding that it has signed approximately 100 partnerships with banks, including neobanks Anytime, which is owned by France's Orange Bank, and Credit Agricole's [EPA:ACA] Blank.

 

The platform launched in France in 2020 and Mansa plans to enter other European countries, Rami said; it will launch in the UK at the end of the year, and is considering launching in Germany. As well as banks, its white-label product could be used by freelancer platforms, insurance companies and other financial institutions to enter the freelancer lending space without building an internal platform, he said. Eventually, it also aims to build a new product in the “buy-now, pay-later” space for SMEs and freelancers, he said.

 

The average term of its loans is eight months and borrowers make payments every month, he said.

 

Comparable companies are iwoca in the UK, which is focused on lending to larger companies, and Younited Credit in France, which is focused on consumer loans rather than specifically lending to freelancers and small companies, Rami said.

 

Rami, COO Benjamin-Jean de Cambier and CTO Remy Tinco founded Mansa in 2019, just after they graduated from high school. It has 25 employees at offices in Paris and London.