Sudanese fintech Bloom announced that it has raised $6.5 million in a seed round involving Visa, Y Combinator, U.S.-based VCs Global Founders Capital (GFC) and Goodwater Capital, and UAE-based early-stage firm VentureSouq. Other participants in the round include angels Arash Ferdowsi, Dropbox co-founder; Nicolas Kopp, former U.S. CEO of N26; footballers Blaise Matuidi and Kieran Gibbs; and early employees at Revolut and Tide.

Founded in 2021 by Ahmed IsmailYoucef OudjidaneKhalid Keenan, and Abdigani Diriye, Bloom offers a high-yield savings account and adjacent digital banking services in Sudan.

Visa got involved with Bloom when the startup got admitted into the global card scheme’s Fintech Fast Track Program. With this partnership, Bloom switched its cards from Mastercard to Visa.

In March, the startup launched from its stealth mode and it also published its waitlist showing that the company had more than 15,000 people signed up. The founders told Techcrunch that the number had topped 100,000.

In March, the company announced that it was a part of Y Combinator’s winter batch this year after launching from stealth that same month. Also, Bloom’s waitlist was made public in March, and at the time, the company had more than 15,000 people signed up; that number has topped 100,000, the founders told TechCrunch. They say the platform has been launched in Sudan but declined to give specific numbers of customers actively using the product.

The startup says that the seed round will help it execute its expansion plan across the Anglo-East African region such as Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Zambia.

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According to Bloom’s CEO Ahmed Ismail, “Our product is live in Sudan. The plan is to scale in the country and then expand to other markets. We anticipate being in at least one market before the end of the year and a couple more early next year.”

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