Investec Asset Management Buys Stake in wiGroup

Investec Asset Management has acquired a significant shareholding in wiGroup, South Africa’s only interoperable point-of-sale mobile transacting network. The deal will enable Investec Asset Management to partner with wiGroup and Capital Eye Investments (“CEI”) to support wiGroup’s growth and development on a local and international level.

Founded in 2007, and backed by CEI, wiGroup’s proprietary mobile transacting network has grown to over 55,000 point-of-sale lanes, providing services to more than fifty mobile transacting issuers. The mobile transaction platform, wiCode platform, is utilised by multiple industries including five large retail chains, over ten hospitality chains, more than fifty FMCG brands and eight mobile issuers in South Africa alone; with a total in-store mobile transaction value of over R4 billion processed securely to date.  In addition, wiGroup develops innovative technology solutions that enable integrated mobile-based payments, loyalty, coupon, voucher, reward and gift programmes.

Anton Gaylard, Capital Eye Investments Executive: “CEI backed the founding management entrepreneurs from inception, and having reached a level of critical mass locally, we are excited about working with Investec Asset Management’s Private Equity team to expand the business across Africa and other relevant international markets.”

wiGroup’s technology is well-suited to emerging markets in Africa and beyond where mobile-based transacting is poised to leapfrog traditional card-based payment, reward and loyalty solutions. Recently wiGroup established a joint venture with Nigeria’s leading SWITCH and payment processor, expanding the wiGroup technology platform into West Africa.

Bevan Ducasse, wiGroup Founder & CEO: “Our partnership with Investec Asset Management marks an important milestone for wiGroup. The expansion capital will enable wiGroup’s international growth objectives, the enhancement of our current product portfolio and will facilitate R&D and the development of new products. We look forward to working closely with both Investec Asset Management and Capital Eye as we grow the business to the next level.”

The expansion capital is funded via Investec Asset Management’s African private equity capability. The Private Equity strategy focuses on growth capital and buyout investments in established mid-market and larger companies in Africa, with the objective of supporting the creation of local or regional champions in their respective industries.

William Alexander, Private Equity Investment Principal at Investec Asset Management: “Investec Asset Management is delighted to partner with wiGroup’s founder-management.  wiGroup has established itself as the leading mobile transaction technology company in Africa and we are looking forward to supporting the business as it enters its next phase of growth and development.”

Click here for wiGroup’s radio interview on ‘The Money Show’.

Click here to watch Bevan Ducasse on CNBC Africa.

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