South Africa’s Revio allows businesses to connect to multiple payment methods and reduce failures

South Africa’s Revio allows businesses to connect to multiple payment methods and reduce failures

Three out of every 10 payments in Africa fail, according to reports. Factors behind this range from a fragmented payments landscape and invalid cards to dormant accounts and higher dispute rates; they surface yearly leading to a $14 billion loss in recurring revenue for digital businesses across the continent.

These problems are bound to increase as digital payments in Africa continue to grow, 20% year-on-year, per some reports. While gateways and aggregators make it easier for businesses accept multiple payment methods, there are few ways to combine them and deal with any payment problems that may arise from each platform. That’s where Revio, a South African API payment and collections company, comes in. It has raised $1.1 Million in seed funding to help it make it easier for African businesses to connect to multiple payment methods and handle payment failures.

Fintech investor Speedinvest led this round, with participation by Ralicap Ventures and The Fund. According to a statement from the startup, several angel investors participated, including payment and revenue recovery experts from Sequoia Capital, Quona Capital, and Circle Payments.

Revio was founded by Ruaan Botha in 2020. Botha, a professional who worked for more than a decade in South Africa’s insurance and banking industries, decided to launch Revio. He was frustrated by the amount of time and effort that businesses put into contacting customers about disputed or failed payments. It was clear that very few companies had made meaningful investments in revenue recovery. When asking over 25 clients where they would invest $1 if they had to fix their payment systems, most of them said they’d spend at least 90% of that money on managing payment failures and customer churn.

” The debit order is South Africa’s largest recurring payment method. However, businesses are unable to add other payment methods to meet customer demand when they want them,” Botha said to TechCrunch in an interview. “It was because of the disconnect among banks, new fintechs, and payment aggregators that made it difficult for businesses collect recurring revenue on a regular basis.” Revio was created to make it easy for businesses to connect any payment method they need in South Africa, as well as globally .”

Botha is joined by three executives who run the company affairs: Chief commercial officer Pieter Grobbelaar, an ex-country lead at Flutterwave; chief technology officer Kyle Titus, who has experience working with fintechs and a venture studio; chief product officer Stefan Griesel, who has over 8 years of fintech product experience; and chief operating officer Nicole Dunn, a venture builder and operator that has worked with multiple African startups.

Dunn said on a conference call with TechCrunch that Revio aggregates and orchestrates payments in multiple payment methods in Africa, including mobile money, bank transfer and vouchers. The platform collects and settles payments in more than 40 markets through payment providers like Flutterwave, Paystack, Ozow and Stitch. Some of its features include smart payment routing and automated billing processes.

CEO Ruaan Botha

In over a year of operations, Revio has onboarded over 50 clients and processes thousands of transactions monthly. These clients include large-scale corporations, mid-market corporations, and fast-growing scale ups that deal with high transaction volumes and recurring revenue businesses. These include telcos and retailers, insurers, telcos, subscription software or media, as well as asset leasing or financing companies, and alternative lenders.

We’ve also built out orchestration capabilities where we can reduce payments failures through smart transaction routing, smart attempts to make sure that a customer doesn’t go into arrears specifically on recurring payment,” said Dunn. “And then where we differentiate ourselves is that we serve businesses with recurring revenue instead of the typical e-commerce platforms.” She adds that Revio has over 100 clients in the pipeline waiting to be onboarded.

Payment orchestration has become increasingly important in today’s world, where businesses are operating in multiple countries and require a variety of payment methods to make ends meet. While a handful of such platforms have existed in the U.S. and Europe to handle this heavy lifting via unified payments API such as Primer, Spreedly and Zooz, businesses in developing markets are starting to see identical platforms such as Revio and Egypt-based MoneyHash take center stage across various regions.

Revisio claims it is the first African payment platform that focuses on revenue recovery and payment failures. Dunn said that Revio has more functionality and coverage in Sub-Saharan Africa than other platforms. Anyway, the global payments orchestration market, per reports, is growing at a fast pace (per a study, the market size is expected to reach $6. 52 billion by 2030, advancing at a CAGR of 24.5% from 2022 to 2030) and there’s more than enough space for newer platforms to grab market share – and incumbents like Revio to deepen its reach.

This is the reason the two-year-old fintech raised capital. It aims to expand its reach in Africa and its team, launch new products and serve a growing clientele.

” I would say that the use investment is twofold,” Botha stated. “One is to gain access to more strategic skills in machine learning and data to help grow and drive better engagement and customer service. We also need to understand why customers fail and how we can improve our response rate. We can then start to explore some of the core African markets with the data we have. We want to operate in about 13 African countries in the next 18 months, but focusing on three or four large markets. And then, get enough traction that we can take on to other emerging markets like Latin America.”

Read More