Goldman Sachs joins $55mn Jumo funding round
African fintech startup JUMO has raised $55mn in debt and equity funding, including from Goldman Sachs
JUMO is on the rise. The five year old African startup, which offers a full technology stack for building and running financial services, has raised a total of $146.7mn in funding over nine rounds dating back to 2014.
The latest round saw major investors including Goldman Sachs, Leapfrog Investments and Odey Asset Management participate; it also included several unnamed investors. JUMO raised $55mn, bringing its total funding raised to nearly $150mn - in two major rounds in 2018 the company raised $64.5mn.
JUMO powers a new wave of financial technologies and tools that enable users to prosper, to build their own business and drive economic growth. The company was founded in 2015 in London by Andrew Watkins-Ball with a vision to reimagine finance in emerging markets.
Just five years later it operates in seven global hubs - Cape Town, Delhi, London, Mumbai, Nairobi, Porto and Singapore - and in six active markets.
Initial activity for JUMO focused primarily around the better use of data, specifically how it can be predict the financial behaviour of those with no access to finance.
Subsequent years have seen JUMO grow rapidly. During 2016, for example, the business fleshed out its team from 112 to 197; in 2017 it won the Mastercard Foundation Clients at the Center Prize, given in recognition of outstanding value for customers.
Next-gen product offering
JUMO's partners have access to an innovative technology stack that allows them top offer savings, lending and insurance products specifically to businesses and entrepreneurs in emerging markets.
This 'stack' has three layers: advanced data engine, end-to-end banking technology operating platform. Combined, they create what JUMO calls "ultra-lean banking technology that delivers financial services at a fraction of typical banking costs".
It's here that the company meets its original vision. The cloud and AI-powered technology it provides allows banks to connect with a traditionally inaccessible customers in a cost-effective and low risk way, giving anyone with a mobile phone and wallet access to previously unprecedented financial choice.
That unprecedented choice is paired with several benefits for customers. These include, says JUMO, increased revenue and customer loyalty, fast access to new customers, future proof financial services and greater economic growth.
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GfK and VMware: Innovating together on hybrid cloud
GfK has been the global leader in data and analytics for more than 85 years, supplying its clients with optimised decision inputs.
In its capacity as a strategic and technical partner, VMware has been walking GfK along its digital transformation path for over a decade.
“We are a demanding and singularly dynamic customer, which is why a close partnership with VMware is integral to the success of everyone involved,” said Joerg Hesselink, Global Head of Infrastructure, GfK IT Services.
Four years ago, the Nuremberg-based researcher expanded its on-premises infrastructure by introducing VMware vRealize Automation. In doing so, it laid a solid foundation, resulting in a self-service hybrid-cloud environment.
By expanding on the basis of VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management, GfK has given itself a secure infrastructure and reliable operations by efficiently operating processes, policies, people and tools in both private and public cloud environments.
One important step for GfK involved migrating from multiple cloud providers to just a single one. The team chose VMware.
“VMware is the market leader for on-premises virtualisation and hybrid-cloud solutions, so it was only logical to tackle the next project for the future together,” says Hesselink.
Migration to the VMware-based environment was integrated into existing hardware simply and smoothly in April 2020. Going forward, GfK’s new hybrid cloud model will establish a harmonised core system complete with VMware Cloud on AWS, VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management and a volume rising from an initial 500 VMs to a total of 4,000 VMs.
“We are modernising, protecting and scaling our applications with the world’s leading hybrid cloud solution: VMware Cloud on AWS, following VMware on Google Cloud Platform,” adds Hesselink.
The hybrid cloud-based infrastructure also empowers GfK to respond to new and future projects with astonishing agility: Resources can now be shifted quickly and easily from the private to the public cloud – without modifying the nature of interaction with the environment.
The gfknewron project is a good example – the company’s latest AI-powered product is based exclusively on public cloud technology. The consistency guaranteed by VMware Cloud on AWS eases the burden on both regular staff and the IT team. Better still, since the teams are already familiar with the VMware environment, the learning curve for upskilling is short.
One very important factor for the GfK was that VMware Cloud on AWS constituted an investment in future-proof technology that will stay relevant.
“The new cloud-based infrastructure comprising VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation forges a successful link between on-premises and cloud-based solutions,” says Hesselink. “That in turn enables GfK to efficiently develop its own modern applications and solutions.
“In market research, everything is data-driven. So, we need the best technological basis to efficiently process large volumes of data and consistently distill them into logical insights that genuinely benefit the client.
“We transform data and information into actionable knowledge that serves as a sustainable driver of business growth. VMware Cloud on AWS is an investment in a platform that helps us be well prepared for whatever the future may hold.”