The investment will be used to scale the startup’s operations and to expand its team, soCash said in an announcement on Tuesday.
“Vertex’s extensive network and proven expertise in working with its portfolio companies to scale their businesses will no doubt prove invaluable to us as we embark on the next phase of soCash’s growth,” said Hari Sivan, CEO & Founder of soCash.
soCash provides digital cash management platforms for banks, enabling users to withdraw cash outside of ATMs from participating merchants.
Aimed at creating the largest cash network in the world powered by mobile devices, the startup’s goal is to convert every shop and customer into a virtual cash distribution network starting in Asia. The company is also the first recipient of the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s FTSI Grant under the Proof of Concept scheme.
“Modeled after the sharing economy, soCash is the new digital cash circulation platform that eliminates costs for banks and retailers while providing convenience to consumers,” said Joo Hock Chua, Managing Partner at Vertex Ventures SE Asia & India.
The payment landscape in Asia remains dominated by cash although there are several initiatives underway and in the offing to move towards a cashless society.
Vertex Ventures, which has backed ride-hailing unicorn Grab and luxury fashion e-Commerce platform Reebonz, closed its third Southeast Asian fund last month at $210 million, marking the first time the VC firm raised money from outside investors. The previous two Southeast Asia-focused funds had been fully funded by Temasek.
With cumulative committed capital in excess of $2.5 billion, Vertex invests in early-stage IT and healthcare opportunities in China, Silicon Valley, India, Israel, and Southeast Asia. Other companies it has backed in the past include Waze, 91 Wireless, IGG, CyberArk, SolarEdge, Force10, FirstCry, Yatra and Changba.