With the recent establishment of a new holding company to acquire the additional stake in Myanmar-based fintech company Wave Money, Singapore-listed Yoma Strategic Holdings aims to become central to the country’s financial system in the near future.
In an interview with DealStreetAsia, Yoma Strategic Holdings CEO Melvyn Pun said Wave Money is targeting as many as 11 million monthly active users on its platform in the next four years. “If we achieve that, this will hopefully be the first tech unicorn in Myanmar,” he added.
Last month, Yoma Strategic announced that it will acquire partner Telenor Group’s stake in Wave Money for $76.5 million. Upon completion of the transaction, it plans to invest up to $25 million in the fintech company. After the transactions, Yoma Group will own roughly two-thirds stake in Wave Money, while Ant Group will hold the rest.
Pun said this was the right time for Yoma Strategic to acquire a controlling stake in Wave Money in a country where 70 per cent of the population is unbanked.
“We looked at the future potential and felt that this is a very opportune time for a local business to take over as a controlling shareholder to help us navigate the long-term business plan,” he said.
Edited excerpts of the interview:-