Home » Digital bank backed by Africa’s first Black billionaire Patrice Motsepe eyes $1-billion valuation

Digital bank backed by Africa’s first Black billionaire Patrice Motsepe eyes $1-billion valuation

South Africa’s leading digital bank seeks $150-million funding, targets IPO in New York by 2028.

by Omokolade Ajayi
Patrice Motsepe

Key Points:

  • TymeBank is raising $150 million, aiming for a $1-billion valuation, to boost its scale ahead of a planned IPO.
  • The digital bank, with 12.4 million customers in South Africa and the Philippines, plans to expand into Indonesia by year-end.
  • Achieving profitability in December 2023, TymeBank targets sustained profitability by June 2024, supported by strategic acquisitions and Series D funding.

South Africa’s leading digital bank, TymeBank, controlled by Patrice Motsepe, Africa’s first Black billionaire, is seeking $150 million in a funding round that could propel its valuation to $1 billion. This move aims to fuel growth as the bank preps for an initial public offering (IPO).

The funding round, potentially making TymeBank a rare South African unicorn according to Bloomberg, follows its rapid customer acquisition across South Africa and the Philippines. TymeBank boasts a customer base of 12.4 million, with 9.2 million in South Africa and 3.2 million served by GoTymeBank in the Philippines.

“We are currently valued at close to $1 billion and are in the midst of our Series-D capital raise at unicorn valuation,” said Coenraad Jonker, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of TymeBank. “Our target is to list TymeBank in New York by 2028, and we will most likely also do a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange for our South African shareholders.”

Expansion plans and growth strategy

The leading digital bank, controlled by Motsepe’s African Rainbow Capital (ARC), expects to complete the funding round by the fourth quarter. The capital raised will support expansion plans, including TymeBank’s anticipated move into Indonesia by the end of the year.

Since its launch in 2019, TymeBank, partially owned by ARC Financial Services Holding, has experienced remarkable growth. Its customer base has grown to more than 12.4 million, making it one of the fastest-growing digital banks in Africa. The bank’s innovative “phygital” approach combines digital channels with physical touchpoints through strategic partnerships, a model similar to Brazil’s Nu Holdings, which was listed in New York in 2021.

Profitability and strategic acquisitions

TymeBank has shown strengthening retention rates and increasing transactional activity, fostering a healthy and growing customer base. The bank achieved profitability in December 2023 and aims for sustained profitability by June 2024. To enhance its market position in the Philippines and increase shareholder value, GoTymeBank acquired Savii, a salary-based lender, to broaden its product offerings and accelerate profitability.

According to an update from Patrice Motsepe’s investment company, African Rainbow Capital, Tyme Group reported an annualized gross revenue run rate of $175 million and net operating income of $110 million. The group’s deposits total $600 million, with a lending portfolio of $165 million. The Series D funding round will support GoTymeBank’s expansion and profitability goals by the end of Q4 2025. Shareholders have increased their stake in GoTymeBank, raising the Group’s economic interest to over 50 percent.

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