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Okra secures $3.5m Seed Round to expand data infrastructure

Fintech infrastructure company, Okra has secured a $3.5 million seed round to expand its services across Nigeria.

The fresh capital comes barely a year the startup received $1 million in a pre-seed round. Okra now has $4.5 million from investors to expand its capacity around the country.

US-based venture capital firm Susa Ventures led the $3.5 million funding in Okra. The San Francisco-based Susa Ventures is known as one of the premium seed-stage funds in Silicon Valley with notable early investments including Robinhood, Flexport, Andela and Fast.

Susa is also known for co-investing with top tier firms like Peter Theil’s Founders Fund, Index Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, GV (Google Ventures), General Catalyst, Andreessen Horowitz, and Accel Partners.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Okra as they enable developers across the African continent to transform digital financial services. We’re blown away by the quality of Okra’s team, pace of development, and the excitement from the customers building on their API,” Seth Berman, General Partner at Susa said.

Participation also came from TLcom Capital Accenture Ventures. TLcom is a repeat investor haven participated in the $1 million pre-seed raised previously.

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Fara Ashiru Jituboh and David Peterside founded Okra in January 2020. The company’s Open Finance platform is the digital transformation tool for businesses in Africa and its API enables developers and businesses to build personalized digital services and fintech products for customers.

Since it was launched, Okra has notched an impressive list of big operators in financial services, startups, and government agencies as clients. The list includes Interswitch, Access Bank, uLesson, Aella App (YC W17) and over a 100 digital-first platforms.

Since it was launched, Okra has seen an average month-on-month API call growth of 281 percent. In addition, the company has analyzed over 20 million transactions and analyzed over 5.5 million transaction lines in March 2021 alone.

“We build the tools that businesses need to achieve full digital transformation and we are excited to be welcoming some highly strategic global investors as we scale our Open Finance-as-a-Service operations. The opportunities to collaborate and grow together are significant and we are now in a strong position to continue to build and scale in the African, and global API space,” Fara Ashiru Jituboh, Okra co-founder and CEO and CTO said.

Three super angel investors also joined the round. Rob Solomon; Chairman at GoFundMe — he is also a former Partner at Accel, Arpan Shah; Founding engineer and ex-Head of Data Platforms/Data products at Robinhood, and Hongxia Zhong; Founding engineer and ex-Senior engineering manager at Robinhood.

“We have consistently been impressed with Fara’s technical depth and expertise, which when combined with the entrepreneurial acumen she and David bring to the company leaves us confident that they are building Africa’s most stable and robust API infrastructure. TLcom is delighted to continue partnering with Okra,” Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner at TLcom Capital and Former Minister of ICT in Nigeria said.

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