UAE FinTech Qashio raises $10m to accelerate expansion into Saudi Arabia

Start-up's solution allows organisations to reduce amount of work put into reimbursements

Armin Moradi, co-founder and CEO of Qashio. Photo: Qashio
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

UAE-based financial technology start-up Qashio raised $10 million in a seed round, with the company planning to expand into Saudi Arabia, the Arab world’s biggest economy.

The new funding round, which consists of both equity and non-equity financing, included participation from various international and regional investors, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

These include One Way Ventures, Mitaa, Cadorna Ventures, Sanabil 500 Mena, Nuwa Capital, Iliad Partners and Phoenix Investments, as well as various strategic family offices and angel investors.

Founded in 2021 by entrepreneurs Armin Moradi and Jonathan Lau, Qashio issues charge cards to companies linked to the FinTech's software, which automates the management of a company's expenses.

The start-up can issue virtual or physical Qashio cards to employees with limits on spending, frequency of use and vendors. This allows companies to better control their finances while reducing costs and saving man-hours.

Transactions made using Qashio’s cards are automatically captured by its software and synched to the company’s accounting system, cutting down the time companies spend on reconciling expenses and receipts, while giving their management a real-time picture of spending.

“At Qashio, we are proud to be an integral part of propelling a cashless society in the UAE and now Saudi Arabia,” said Mr Moradi, chief executive and co-founder of Qashio.

“We are committed to helping companies move away from all those manual finance processes and get more visibility and control by providing a secure, safe solution.

“Saudi Arabia is making great efforts to align with its Vision 2030 — taking FinTech-friendly approaches and bringing more FinTech firms into the market.”

The FinTech market worldwide is projected to reach $332.5 billion by 2028, from $112.5 billion in 2021, the latest report by global payments company MasterCard showed.

There are more than 470 FinTech unicorns — or start-ups with a valuation of $1 billion and above — globally, with 40 of them added in the first quarter of this year.

The Middle East and North Africa region is expected to have 45 FinTech unicorns by 2030, a 10th of the global number, the report said.

With Qashio charge cards, companies can set limits on spending, frequency of use and vendors. Photo: Qashio

“This round of funding will help us to expand hiring and growth into Saudi Arabia and other parts of the GCC as well as accelerate the execution of the product road map. We are excited for the days ahead,” said Mr Lau, chief product officer and co-founder of Qashio.

Qashio's virtual and physical cards combined with its software allow businesses to manage their spending in an automated and transparent way, saving hundreds of man-hours and reducing cash leakage in the process, the company said.

Finance and human resources departments benefit from “better expense reporting, better visibility, control of cash flows and an empowered workforce”, it added.

Updated: November 23, 2022, 3:27 AM