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Uganda’s gnuGrid secures $612k seed round for expansion.

Ugandan company gnuGrid has raised the size of its seed funding round to US$612,500,as it pivots its product offering to move into the fintech space

Solar Sentra was launched in 2019 by David Opio and James Dailey with the goal of streamlining and automating the highly fragmented solar industry in Uganda and beyond by using AI-optimized sensors to monitor solar systems and collect data on power usage that solar companies can use to tailor service delivery.

To help solar companies operate more efficiently and at lower costs, gnuGrid bundled this hardware with digital payments, predictive analytics, customer profiling, and data management, among other features.

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 The startup began the year with a funding round, which it has now increased to close its seed round at US$612,500. The funding comes from a handful individual angel investors, giving gnuGrid a pre-money valuation of US$6.25 million. In 2019, the startup raised $50,000 to develop its tech engine, pilot the product, and launch it into the market.

However, gnuGrid’s product has changed, with the firm announcing that it has pivoted to become a licensed credit reference bureau to help many informal and formal financial and credit institutions de-risk their investments and build reputational collateral for last-mile credit consumers and borrowers.

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“gnuGrid has the system necessary to onboard the millions of unbanked/tier four consumers in Uganda – all of Africa, actually,” Opio said.

“It is the first-ever local credit reference bureau licensed by the Bank of Uganda to provide credit reference services to enable lenders to know how borrowers repay their loans.”

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The seed funding was utilized to make up data hosting servers and a cutting-edge customer support center, onboard new employees, develop the CRB platform, and implement sales and marketing initiatives. With the round now closed, gnuGrid is working with PwC on a US$10 million Series A round.

Weddy Thuranira
Weddy Thuranira
Weddy profiles new startups and innovators across Africa and announces funding rounds, mergers, acquisitions and startup partnerships across Africa. She is based in Nairobi, Kenya. Reach her and the entire news desk at [email protected]

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