salary, a Jakarta and Dhaka-based Earned Wage Access (EWA) platform, raised $8.3m in pre-Series A funding, just seven months after announcing its funding round. The new funds will be used to fuel Wagely’s expansion into Bangladesh, where it recently launched, and build other features to become a “holistic financial wellness platform” including savings, insurance, long-term loans and financial education.
Earned wages access platforms allow workers to access wages they have already earned on demand, instead of waiting for payday. Wagely says its user base grew 10x year-over-year in 2021, with clients including British American Tobacco, Ranch Market, Adaro Energy and Medco Energi.
The new round was led by East Ventures (Growth Fund), with participation from returning investors like Integra Partners, Asian Development Fund, Global Founders Capital, Trihill Capital, Blauwpark Partners and 1982 Ventures. This brings Wagely’s total raised to $14 million since launching in 2020.
Wagely has also received backing from Central Capital Ventura, the venture capital arm of Bank Central Asia (BCA), one of Indonesia’s largest private banks.
Tobias Fischer, co-founder and CEO of Wagely, told TechCrunch that BCA “has one of the largest networks of companies in Indonesia. Many of these companies fit the target profile of Wagely customers. On the other hand, Wagely already serving some… BCA customers, which offers the opportunity to leverage synergies between segments and products, not only with BCA but also with other banking partners who want to innovate in financial services and create a positive impact.
Bangladesh was chosen as Wagely’s second market because “we see a massive opportunity for fintech in Bangladesh which is characterized by similar attractive fundamentals as Indonesia in terms of demographics, large TAM, limited access to credit , a growing demand for bespoke financial services and the ability to expand the product and segments.The startup has already signed contracts with leading ready-to-wear manufacturers such as SQ Group, Classic Composite and Vision Garments.
In a statement, East Ventures Managing Partner Roderick Purwana said, “With Wagely’s rapid growth over the past several quarters, we believe they will be the preferred partner for large companies that aim to challenge the status quo of the financial well-being of workers in Indonesia and beyond”.