GREE Ventures invests in Ayannah

GREE Ventures today announced that it has invested an undisclosed amount in Philippines-based Veritas Mobile Holdings Ltd, which operates as digital commerce and payments services platform Ayannah.

According to an official statement, this latest injection of funds is part of an upsized follow-on round. The investment will be used to help Ayannah move into other emerging markets in Southeast Asia and beyond.

Ayannah last made headlines in July 2014 when it raised US$1 million from venture capital firms such as IMJ Investment Partners, Beenos, Siemer Ventures, and Golden Gate Ventures. As of July 2014, the company had raised more than US$4.5 million in funding.

For background, Ayannah has launched two services — Sendah and Sendah Direct — for migrants and the unbanked respectively. The services allow overseas and domestic Filipinos to remit and receive funds without the hassle of waiting in line. Alternatively, it has developed and launched Gamenah, an online wallet for gamers to buy prepaid game credits and digital goods.

This is GREE Ventures’ first investment in the financial space. Its portfolio includes e-commerce companies such as Luxola and BerryBenka, mobile rewards startup YOYO, and 12 other firms.

Also Read: mRemit to allow direct fund transfers to Indonesia and the Philippines

“Their (GREE Ventures) network of partners and portfolio companies in other Southeast Asian countries will allow us to solidify our leadership position in digital commerce and payments for migrants and the unbanked in the Philippines and hasten our expansion to other emerging markets,” said Mikko Perez, CEO, Ayannah.

Speaking to e27, Kuan Hsu, Principal, GREE Ventures, talked about why GREE’s venture arm decided to invest in Ayannah, which addresses a problem faced by every migrant in the world. He said, “If you look at the demographics and also the future of the Southeast Asian market, it is mass and lower; that’s where the future market will come from. So, for me, I look at (the) existing market and also what’s in the future.”

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