[Funding alert] Fintech app Zenda raises $9.4M in seed round

The seed funding round, which came from regional and global investors STV, COTU, Global Founders Capital, and VentureSouq, will be used for product development and market expansion in India.

Bengaluru and Dubai-based fintech app zenda has raised $9.4 million in an oversubscribed seed round with participation from STV, COTU, Global Founders Capital, and VentureSouq.


The startup currently addresses pain points around the payment of school fees, the lack of convenience and flexibility in payment options for parents and the poor collection of payments for schools.

zenda said the funds will be used for product development and market expansion in India. 

Using zenda, families can track dues and make payments through a multitude of pay-now and pay-later options, and unlock rewards for paying on time. The startup integrates with schools through its proprietary data model and APIs and eliminates last mile reconciliation challenges and delays.

zenda was founded in June 2021 by Raman Thiagarajan and Haseeb Ahmed, alumni of McKinsey & Company, where Raman led the firm’s financial services practice in the MENA region. zenda is the founders’ second startup, and leverages deep insights and knowledge from their previous edtech venture.  

CEO and Founder of zenda, Raman Thiagarajan said,

“Since our launch, feedback from the market, especially from our users, has been terrific. Over the past months in India we have built a pipeline of more than 1000+ institutions and are immensely grateful for their trust. It is gratifying to see the response from parents and seeing how they have embraced our service. zenda schools are witnessing a systematic increase in their collections. We have a truly outstanding team and I feel privileged to have such a passionate group with us on this journey.”

After its initial launch in UAE, zenda initiated India entry and operations in Q3 2021. zenda witnessed strong market traction with schools and with families. It has grown its user base 20X since June 2021 and crossed the $100 million+ in annual contracted total payments volume (TPV) by Q4 2021, across both markets. With more than 40 team members now, and 2/3rds in India, the team has scaled rapidly, operating out of Bengaluru, Kochi, Delhi and Dubai. 


zenda’s mission is to help families thrive. In the future, it aims to make it easier for families to manage money and to enable their financial wellness through tailored banking and financial experiences.

Ihsan Jawad, General Partner at STV, said,

“Seeing their strong traction over the past several months, we couldn't be more excited about zenda. India and the GCC are a $100+ billion market for private education fees. They have built an outstanding team and we look forward to working with them in helping zenda achieve its mission.”                          
Edited by Megha Reddy


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