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    HomeEcosystem NewsNORTHERN AFRICAEgyptian Fintech Startup MNZL Attracts $3.5 Million Investment for Disruptive Lending Platform

    Egyptian Fintech Startup MNZL Attracts $3.5 Million Investment for Disruptive Lending Platform

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    MNZL, a fintech startup based in Cairo, Egypt, has secured a substantial investment totaling $3.5 million. This funding amount signifies a strong initial backing for MNZL. Investors in this round include P1 Ventures (lead investor), Localglobe, Ingressive Capital, 500 Startups, Flat6labs, First Circle Capital, ENZA Capital, Beenok, and prominent angel investors. 

    MNZL plans to use the investment to transform the lending landscape in Egypt and the MEA region by providing easier and more affordable credit through a digital asset wallet. MNZL’s ambition goes beyond just creating a successful business. They aim to fundamentally change how Egyptians access credit, promoting financial inclusion and economic growth.

    Why Investors Invested

    • Untapped Market: Less than 10% of Egyptian adults have access to credit, with most loans unsecured and expensive. MNZL targets this vast underserved population. Investors see a significant opportunity in the millions of Egyptians currently excluded from traditional financial services. MNZL’s solution has the potential to improve the lives of a large segment of the population.
    • Disruptive Innovation: The asset wallet concept is a game-changer, allowing secure and convenient access to credit using homes and cars. MNZL’s approach is not just an incremental change. The digital asset wallet offers a fundamentally new way for people to leverage their existing assets to meet financial needs. This innovation has the potential to disrupt the traditional lending model in Egypt.
    • Experienced Team: MNZL boasts strong leadership, combining Sameh Saleh’s successful entrepreneurial background with Ahmed and Bassem’s deep expertise in technology and finance. Sameh, a celebrated entrepreneur in the MENA region, exemplifies this approach. Previously, he founded Hawaya, a company that tackled critical social issues before its high-profile acquisition by Match Group. Sameh’s journey from seed stage to successful exit underscores his profound understanding of how technology can solve large-scale problems — a vision he now brings to the financial sector with MNZL. To complement his vision, Sameh has assembled a team of seasoned tech leaders in Ahmed and Bassem. Each with over a decade of experience, they have led engineering and product teams across Europe and Africa. Their backgrounds boast impressive credentials: roles at prominent unicorns like Pleo and Trustpilot, experience scaling digital products in Africa (EIDU), and work in established financial institutions like Deutsche Bank. This unique blend equips them with both startup agility and institutional expertise, perfectly suited for MNZL’s mission.
    • Global Potential: MNZL’s model can be replicated across emerging markets with similar financial inclusion challenges. The potential market for MNZL’s solution extends far beyond Egypt. Investors see the opportunity to scale the business model to other countries in Africa and beyond, with similar limited access to traditional credit.
    • Validation: Regulatory approval and early traction demonstrate market demand. MNZL has already secured the necessary regulatory approvals from Egypt’s Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA), demonstrating the viability of their concept from a legal standpoint. Early traction in the market further validates the existence of customer demand for their services.

    P1 Ventures, based in San Francisco, partners with African tech founders, focusing on pre-seed and seed-stage startups across Africa. Notable investments include Chari and Amenli. Flat6Labs, operating in the MENA region, supports entrepreneurs annually, with notable investments like Dabchy and the Climate Finance Accelerator program. Localglobe, headquartered in London, backs UK founders from seed stage to exit, with notable portfolio companies including Citymapper and Zoopla. Ingressive Capital, based in Lagos, focuses on pre-seed and seed-stage tech startups across Africa, with notable investments in Amenli and Chari. 500 Startups, headquartered in San Francisco, invests globally across various sectors, aiming to support talented entrepreneurs in creating successful companies at scale. First Circle Capital is a Moroco-based VC firm while Enza Capital has its headquarters in Niarobi, Kenya. Based in Dakar, Senegal beenok is an advisory and investment firm that works with founders, boards and senior leadership teams of bold firms to deliver hypergrowth in Africa.

    A Look At MNZL 

    Founded in 2023 by Sameh Saleh (CEO), Ahmed Dessouky (CTO), Bassem Elshaer (COO), Cairo-based MNZL’s mission is to revolutionize credit access by enabling Egyptians to leverage their homes and cars for financing. MNZL introduces a wallet concept to asset-backed lending, an innovation that allows home and car owners to upload their assets into a digital wallet, and turn it into cash that they can borrow for their needs. That is, they introduce a digital “asset wallet.” The idea is that Egyptians can upload information about their homes or cars (their assets) into this secure online wallet. MNZL then uses this information to help them get loans with better interest rates because the loan is “secured” by the value of the asset.

    Think of it like this: Imagine you own a car. MNZL’s platform lets you “lock up” the value of your car in a digital safe (your asset wallet). This “locked-up” value acts like a guarantee to the lender, allowing them to offer you a loan with a lower interest rate because they know they can recover their money if you can’t pay them back.

    For Egyptians, this means easier access to loans and potentially lower interest rates. For MNZL, it creates a new market by offering loans to people who previously couldn’t get them from traditional banks.

    Charles Rapulu Udoh is a Lagos-based lawyer, who has several years of experience working in Africa’s burgeoning tech startup industry. He has closed multi-million dollar deals bordering on venture capital, private equity, intellectual property (trademark, patent or design, etc.), mergers and acquisitions, in countries such as in the Delaware, New York, UK, Singapore, British Virgin Islands, South Africa, Nigeria etc. He’s also a corporate governance and cross-border data privacy and tax expert. As an award-winning writer and researcher, he is passionate about telling the African startup story, and is one of the continent’s pioneers in this regard.

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