LemFi raises $33M in series A funding


Fintech startup, LemFi has managed to secure an impressive $33 million in its Series A funding round, with Left Lane Capital leading the investment.

Notable contributors to this funding include Y-Combinator, Zrosk, Global Founders Capital, and Olive Tree.

LemFi, an innovative platform within the fintech sector, is dedicated to transforming financial services for immigrants. Their recent accomplishment marks a significant step forward.

Founded by Ridwan Olalere and Rian Cochran in 2020, LemFi aims to alleviate the financial challenges faced by immigrants as they relocate for better opportunities.

The founders’ backgrounds in OPay, a successful African fintech platform, equipped them with valuable insights into cross-border payments. They established LemFi to bridge the gap in financial services for immigrants, leveraging their personal experiences as first-generation immigrants.

“Ridwan Olalere, now CEO of LemFi, understands the struggles immigrants encounter firsthand. He envisions universal access to financial services and views LemFi as a means to achieve this. The platform has already positively impacted over 500,000 individuals, yet Olalere believes there’s much more potential to unlock,” according to reports.

LemFi simplifies the process for immigrants to access crucial financial services. Upon arriving in their new country, users can swiftly register with LemFi and utilize its multi-currency capabilities for various financial tasks. This includes sending, receiving, holding, converting, and saving funds in both their home country and their new location. Additionally, LemFi offers competitive exchange rates and instant international transfers, all without charging fees for transactions or account maintenance.

Mr Olalere emphasizes that “LemFi’s approach is groundbreaking, as it addresses the limitations of traditional banks and other fintech platforms. These conventional options often avoid dealing with less common or volatile currencies, leaving immigrants with few alternatives. LemFi’s product fills this gap, offering a comprehensive solution for their financial needs.”

LemFi initially launched in Canada in 2020, focusing on affordable remittance payments to countries like Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya. The platform’s reach quickly expanded to the UK in 2021, accompanied by the inclusion of 10 new African remittance corridors.

Acquiring UK-based Rightcard Payment Services in 2021 marked a significant strategic move for LemFi. This acquisition allowed the company to secure an Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, broadening its capabilities and offerings.

Matthew Miller, Principal at Left Lane Capital and now part of LemFi’s Board of Directors, commended the company’s strategic approach and its potential to make a global impact on cross-border payments for immigrant communities.

In 2023, LemFi achieved another pivotal milestone by obtaining an International Money Transfer Operator (IMTO) license from the Central Bank of Nigeria through its subsidiary, Rightcard Payment Services. This license enables LemFi to collaborate directly with Nigerian banks, cutting out intermediaries and empowering users.

“LemFi’s journey is far from complete, as the company aspires to serve migrant communities across the world. With their latest funding success, they have their sights set on expansion to the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.”

LemFi recently entered the Kenyan market through a partnership with Pesa Swap, a local online and mobile payment solutions provider. The company’s ongoing vision involves continuous innovation to meet the evolving needs of its diverse user base.