Leading Fintech Startups In Vietnam
2021 was a fruitful year for Vietnam’s fintech sector which saw rising consumer adoption of digital financial solutions amid COVID-19 restrictions and continued investor interest in the growth prospect of the sector.
Vietnamese fintech companies raised a total of US$375 million in the first nine months of 2021, putting the country at the 3rd position in fintech investment amount across ASEAN, behind only Singapore and Indonesia, according to the Fintech in ASEAN 2021 report by UOB, PwC Singapore and the Singapore Fintech Association.
While the biggest deal went to VNPay (US$250 million Series B), two-thirds of the year’s rounds were in pre-series stage, hinting at Vietnam’s still nascent fintech scene.
To get a sense of Vietnam’s young yet burgeoning fintech ecosystem, we’ve selected five early-stage fintech startups to watch closely this year. These startups were all founded within the past three years but are already making waves, having secured funding from prominent investors and recorded strong customer growth over the past year.
Launched in January 2021, Infina is a retail investment app that aspires to become the “Robinhood of Vietnam.”
The company, which works with partners including Dragon Capital, ACB Capital, Mirae Asset Fund Management, and Viet Capital Asset Management, enables investors to pick from several assets including savings accounts, term deposits, fractionalized real estate and mutual funds, and start investing from just as little as US$0.5 for stock trading and US$4 for funds.
Infina says it saw a compound monthly growth rate of 64% in funded accounts in 2021 and serves “tens of thousands of users,” showcasing the traction the app is witnessing. The startup is a Y Combinator alumnus and has raised US$6 million in seed funding, which it said it will use to fuel growth and expand its product offerings.
AnFin is another Vietnamese stock tracking app that’s making waves in the domestic fintech scene. The startup offers real-time fractional share trading and allows users to start investing in stocks from just US$0.5. It supports some 150 stocks, and features portfolio management capabilities, a news feed, and a knowledge center.
AnFin, which was just founded last year, has already raised funding from prominent investors including Global Founders Capital (GFC), First Check Ventures, and R2 Venture Partners. Most recently, it closed US$1.2 million in seed funding which it said it will use to further develop its trading platform.
Only 3% of Vietnam’s 100 million population have a stock brokerage account, according to investment firm VinaCapital. The government aims to increase that penetration rate to 10% by 2030.
Nano Technologies is the developer of Vui, a mobile app that lets workers in Vietnam access their earned wages immediately.
The app is designed for workers in various sectors ranging from retail and food and beverage to manufacturing and construction whose monthly incomes are less than VND 15 million (US$650), co-founder Dzung Dang said in May 2021. These workers are vulnerable to underground lenders who can charge up to 500% in interest rates, he said.
In just six months after its launch, the app had been used by more than 20,000 employees from companies like GS25, LanChi Mart and Annam Gourmet. The company claims that about 50% to 60% of employees sign up for Vui as soon as their employers offer it, and use the service about three times every month to withdraw their earned wages.
Founded in 2020, Nano Technologies raised US$3 million in an oversubscribed seed funding round last year.
Similarly to Vui, Gimo offers on-demand payroll services, allowing employees to access their earned salary almost instantly via a mobile app integrated with the company’s payroll system. The app also lets users track their workdays and daily earnings in real-time as well as receive personal finance tips.
The company was founded in 2019 but only officially rolled out its service in early 2021. As of November 2021, it claimed to have provided on-demand pay for more than 25,000 workers mainly in the manufacturing and retail sectors, growing at a monthly rate of 130%. Gimo secured US$1.9 million last year which it said it will use to integrate advanced technologies including data analytics and artificial intelligence to enhance customer experience, hire senior engineers and strengthen risk management competencies.
Bizzi is the developer of an accounting automation tool that aims to simplify and digitize the financial operations of businesses. Bizzi works on top of existing accounting software and leverages technologies including robotic process automation (RPA) and machine learning to automate processes such as bill payments, receipt scanning, compliance, and bookkeeping.
The company claims its solution reduces the invoice processing time by 80%, lowers the cost by 50% and boosts transparency and tax compliance.
Founded in 2019, Bizzi says it has achieved a monthly invoice processing value exceeding US$300 million. The company serves more than 100 major clients including Grab, GS25, Circle K, Tiki, and counts over 4,000 vendors using the platform on a daily basis.
Bizzi closed a US$3 million pre-Series A funding round in October 2021 which it said it will use to improve its product features and functionality and expand its customer network to other Southeast Asian markets.