ImpactAlpha, January 31 – South Africa has the highest unemployment rate in the world. About 100,000 workers support themselves through gig-based apps like Uber and PicUP, most of which don’t pay a living wage.
Cape Town-based Floatpays gives workers access to wages they’ve earned before they get paid and provides savings and financial literacy tools. Unlike the common alternative – high-interest payday loans – the fintech venture charges a flat fee for the service.
Floatpays’ seed round was backed by Global Founders Capital, FINCA Ventures, 4DX Ventures and other investors. Olugbenga Agboola, founder of Nigerian digital payments company Flutterwave, also invested.
Founder Simon Ward says he started Floatpays in 2020 to “move employees out of bad debt cycles and into savings and long-term financial wellness.”
A growing crop of fintech companies are serving gig workers in emerging markets, including South African peer PayMeNow, Kenya’s ImaliPay and Pakistan’s Abhi, which also gives workers access to their earnings.