Consumer services

Egyptian consumer finance startup Blnk raises $32 million

Egyptian consumer finance startup Blnk has raised US$32 million in debt and equity funding to further develop its AI-powered lending infrastructure and fund its rapidly growing client portfolio.

Co-founded in 2021 by Amr Sultan and Tarek Elsheikh, Flash is an AI-enabled digital consumer finance platform that provides merchants with instant credit onboarding and underwriting technology to provide financing to their customers at the point of sale.

Consumers can access Blnk’s services at their preferred stores within Blnk’s merchant network, with just their national ID card. In as little as three minutes, consumers get financing with payment terms of up to 36 months. Blnk has disbursed over $20 million in loans to date.

The start-up has just raised US$23.7 million in equity and debt, and US$8.3 million in securitized bond issues. The combined US$12.5 million pre-seed and seed funding rounds were led by Emirates International Investment Company (EIIC) of Abu Dhabi and Egyptian venture capital firm Sawari Ventures, with participation from several leading local and international angel investors.

Debt financing of $11.2 million was secured from a number of leading local banks, while the securitized bond issue of $8.3 million was underwritten by the National Bank of Egypt and Banque du Caire, making Blnk the youngest Egyptian startup to securitize its loan portfolio.

“Our mission is to make it easier for more Egyptians to buy the products and services they want by offering inclusive and convenient consumer credit at the point of sale. We are delighted to have the support of a large cohort of investors at an early stage in our journey. With their support, we believe we can foster financial inclusion in Egypt, as well as the broader Middle East and North Africa region,” Sultan said.

Joseph Iskander, head of investment at EIIC, said he was convinced that the Egyptian market and its ecosystem of startups presented an attractive opportunity for regional and international investors.

“We are committed to identifying and investing in value-added businesses. We are delighted to partner with Blnk to drive financial inclusion and economic development in Egypt and look forward to working with the team to achieve their goals,” he said.