New York, 18 October 2022 — Women’s World Banking Capital Partners II (WWBCP II) has announced an investment in Latin American fintech company Tienda Pago, representing WWBCP II’s ninth investment to date. WWBCP II seeks to close the gender gap in financial inclusion, while demonstrating the business case for gender lens investing by achieving attractive returns for its investors.
Small businesses are fundamental drivers of economic development in Latin America and represent the vast majority of businesses and employment in the region. However, they lack access to funding, with data showing that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) receive only 12% of total formal credit in the region. Tienda Pago helps to bridge this gap by providing small business owners with working capital via short-term inventory financing on its digital platform. The company, which operates in Peru and Mexico, works with product distributors to provide seamless, cashless transactions that benefit not just shop owners, but suppliers as well, providing value at both ends of the supply chain.
Tienda Pago’s services were of particular importance during the COVID-19 pandemic, as small retailers disproportionately faced the challenges of lockdowns and supply-chain disruptions. During this time, the company’s clients were able to continue stocking their inventories even as sales slowed, and families stayed in business despite the short-term shocks.
Leveraging Women’s World Banking’s proprietary, data-driven organizational and market gender assessments, Tienda Pago will identify opportunities to increase exposure to potential female customers, as well as attract and retain female candidates for employment. WWBCP II will work to ensure gender parity is a priority in staffing decisions, particularly in underrepresented technology positions. The investment will also increase WWBCP II’s exposure to the traditionally underserved market of women-owned MSMEs.
“Small business owners are the cornerstone of economic development, and entrepreneurship is a vital piece of the global strategy to increase women’s financial inclusion,” said CJ Juhasz, Chief Investment Officer at Women’s World Banking Asset Management (WAM). “We are very excited to partner with Tienda Pago to provide access to finance for this important customer base.”
“Our new and existing investors’ continued support of Tienda Pago’s business model and expansion will allow us to grow and generate more impact in our communities,” added Dan Cohen, CEO and founder of Tienda Pago. “Small stores are at the heart of their communities; their health directly impacts their neighborhoods. Today, over 68% of people working in small stores are women taking care of their families. Providing formal and continuous credit allows these women to have their stores well-stocked.”
Women’s World Banking Asset Management co-led the Series B round alongside IDC Ventures. Current Tienda Pago investors also participated in the Series B round, including Kaszek Ventures, QED, Accion Venture labs, Agrega Partners and Oiko Credit, as well as a new investor, the Alumni Fund.
About Women’s World Banking Asset Management
Women’s World Banking Asset Management (“WAM”) invests in innovative inclusive finance companies in emerging markets, guiding them to capture the substantial market share of financially underserved women and the largely untapped talent pool of women staff and leaders. WAM’s first Fund was a pioneer of gender-focused impact investing in inclusive financial service providers. WWBCP II expands the gender-focused investment strategy in innovative financial service providers, with a dedicated technical assistance facility to help portfolio companies achieve strategic objectives toward gender inclusion.
About IDC Ventures
IDC Ventures is an investment fund that finances projects that drive innovation and digital disruption. IDC Ventures focuses on companies in the fintech industry, marketplace, and platforms throughout Europe, the US, and Latin America. To date, it has raised more than USD $400 million for technology companies and supported projects such as Curve, Bipi, RecargaPay, Merqueo, Securitize, and many more.
About Tienda Pago
Tienda Pago (“TP”) is a fintech company that operates in Mexico and in Peru. TP provides short-term credit to small convenience stores in the region to buy inventory from established Consumer Packaged Good companies (CPGs) and distributors. TP allows stores to receive inventory for a week, paying for those deliveries directly via banking transfer to the inventory providers. Tienda Pago uses innovative mobile technology and business models to reach a population that is financially underserved to foster financial inclusion.