UK-based Pomelo Pay raises $10m, plans expansion in Europe and Asia

Vincent Choi, Pomelo Pay CEO and co-founder. (Photo courtesy of Pomelo Pay)

London-based digital payments company Pomelo Pay has raised $10 million in a Series A round led by UK-based investment firm Inference Partners to back the company’s expansion plan in Europe and Asia, according to a statement on Thursday.

Venture capital Force Over Mass, which led Pomelo Pay’s $2.9 million seed funding round in 2020, also participated in the latest round.

The funding will be used to expand the company’s presence across global markets, starting with the plan to double its workforce in London, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, and the Phillippines. The company also named former Alipay and FIS Worldpay executive Sonam Bhutia as chief commercial officer as part of the strategy to strengthen its regional headquarters in Singapore.

“This investment from Inference Partners comes at an opportune time where businesses and SMEs in Southeast Asia have become accustomed to selling on digital platforms,” said Vincent Choi, Pomelo Pay CEO and co-founder.

“We plan to capitalise on the huge pace of growth and adoption by partnering banks and NBFIs from emerging markets to offer merchants easy and affordable payment solutions to help them innovate their business and grow their customer base,” added Choi said in the statement.

Pomelo Pay helps SMEs to make their payment process seamless while also improving their cash flow management. It enables small businesses to take payments anywhere using their phones without the need for additional hardware.

The company offers payment features, e-commerce platforms, and QR code solutions to merchants. The service accepts more than 35 payment methods.

Since it was founded in 2017, more than 2,000 businesses across seven countries have signed up to Pomelo Pay’s service, according to its website.

While Pomelo Pay competes against global competitors such as PayPal, there are other payment gateway players in the region. Jakarta-based Xendit, for example, recently raised $150 million in its Series C funding round, earning them the unicorn status.

There are also other companies offering payment infrastructures such as Gojek’s MidTrans and Xfers in Indonesia, as well as PayMongo in the Philippines.

Small businesses across the SE Asia region have managed to weather massive disruption due to the global pandemic by going digital. The e-Conomy SEA 2021 report by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Co also found that all digital financial services are flourishing. The report expected digital payments in the region to increase by 9% annually in gross transaction value (GTV) to $707 billion this year and it is projected to surpass $1.1 trillion by 2025.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.