International Finance Corporation (IFC) and IFC Emerging Asia Fund, a fund managed by IFC Asset Management Company (AMC), are pouring in $40 million worth of newly-issued shares in Voyager Innovations for a minority stake that will allow the local digital technology company to expand its financial inclusion efforts and promote the digital economy through the broader use of digital payments.
Voyager Innovations is a technology company in the Philippines focused on developing customer-centric emerging market platforms in the areas of digital payments and marketing technologies targeting the grassroots and the unbanked or underserved sector of society as well as digital natives who find the convenience of cashless payments.
A few weeks ago, global investment firm KKR and Chinese multinational investment holding conglomerate Tencent announced its $175-million investment in Voyager. With the new investments from IFC and IFC Emerging Asia, Voyager now is able to raise a total of $215 million. “The combined investment continues to make this fund raise the largest investment to date in a Philippine technology company.”
In a news advisory released on Monday, Voyager said PLDT’s ownership stake in the company will be less than 50 percent while still remaining as the single largest shareholder upon the close of the investments of KKR, Tencent, IFC, and IFC Emerging Asia Fund which is expected before the end of the year.
“We at PLDT are quite happy to welcome the investment of the International Finance Corporation and the IFC Emerging Asia Fund in Voyager Innovations,” said Manuel V. Pangilinan, chair and CEO of PLDT and Smart Communications, in the news release announcing the investment. “In this undertaking, we are kindred spirits. Through its Global Innovative Retail Payments Program, IFC aims to make financial services much more accessible and affordable to the world’s low-income population by supporting innovative financial services. That is precisely the goal that PLDT is pursuing through Voyager’s platforms.”
IFC, a sister organization of the World Bank and a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. IFC Asset Management Company, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of IFC, mobilizes and manages capital to invest in businesses in developing and frontier markets.
“Our mission is to accelerate digital and financial inclusion in the Philippines, so all Filipinos can participate in the digital economy. IFC and IFC Emerging Asia Fund’s investment will enable us to scale up our efforts especially in the digital financial services space,” said Orlando Vea, president and CEO of Voyager Innovations.
Photo from Voyager Innovations Facebook page.