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Here’s the first M’sian biz to get funded by Sequoia’s Surge & what they’ll do with US$2mil

Malaysian-based fintech startup, IIMMPACT, has announced that it received US$2 million (RM8.37 million) in seed funding from Sequoia India’s Surge. The latter is an accelerator programme for startups in SEA and India.

In fact, IIMMPACT is Surge’s first startup that’s founded and based in Malaysia. 

Started by Alex Tan and Kelvin Lee, IIMMPACT essentially provides a turnkey solution so that businesses that want to digitalise their payment services can easily do so with little coding.

Equipped with the funds, IIMMPACT believes it can help businesses build their own super apps.

A turnkey solution

Building apps for services such as e-wallets, banking, and e-commerce can be resource-intensive and costly. 

This is because companies need to source and enable data (e.g. credit scores, payment gateways, and user behaviour) from multiple stakeholders, which includes governments and banks, for example.

“It will take roughly three to six months getting approval, developing, testing, and going live,” Alex added on the stringent process. 

Hence, IIMMPACT created a solution to help its clients reduce the time and labour taken to develop such services. With the use of API, companies can offer payment services to customers within their individual servers with just a few lines of code. 

Dictionary Time: An API (Application Programming Interface) is a software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other. In other words, an API is the messenger that delivers your request to the provider that you’re requesting it from and then delivers the response back to you.

MuleSoft

Some of IIMMPACT’s solutions include:

  • Payment aggregation: For businesses to optimise digital sales by allowing customers to safely make payments to over 170 billers;
  • Information aggregation: For companies to access information straight from government services to automate processes like customer identity verification (eKYC) or feed into credit scoring models;
  • Financial aggregation: For fintech services to easily get a full picture of customers’ finances including their bank accounts, credit cards, loans, etc.

With access to these services, companies of any size can launch digital payment products for their customers. They include services such as phone top-ups, utility payment, car insurance renewal, gaming, tax assessment, and F&B vouchers, to name a few.

A snapshot of the services provided / Image Credit: IIMMPACT

Helping companies build super apps

If you’re like me and wondering what IIMMPACT stands for, Alex told us that it’s a stylised version of the word “impact” to make the brand name more recognisable and memorable.

During its early days, IIMMPACT started out as a loyalty app. It pivoted in 2020 to provide API fintech solutions when it became a Top 10 company in ScaleUp Malaysia’s first cohort.

In 2021 alone, IIMMPACT’s white-label solutions have processed over US$90 million in transaction value, presumably catalysed by the pandemic’s digitalisation push.

Now with fresh funds of US$2 million, IIMMPACT aims to help businesses with a fintech component (even a small retail store) build their own super app to help customers pay their bills.

Alex shared that IIMMPACT will first be using the funds to expand the company’s sales and tech teams. This will hopefully enable them to reach more clients and help them develop new products to bring value to customers.

“Down the line, we may also increase our digital products to encompass insurance, transportation, and government-related services,” Alex stated.

When asked if Alex sees a future in serving an international market, he responded affirmatively, though that will not be a priority for now until their presence locally is strengthened.

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IIMMPACT’s funding to help other fintech services can be seen as a timely one, especially as the country will announce its picks for fintech services that have earned a digital banking license.

As financial inclusion and access to banking services become more digitalised, these fintech services can easily expand their offerings within their apps with IIMMPACT’s API.

It will be beneficial for these digital banks to become their own super apps, able to offer a variety of payment services under the sun. This would spell better convenience for Malaysians too, as they can then do most of their banking transactions in a few clicks on a single app.

  • Learn more about IIMMPACT here.
  • Read about other funding news we’ve covered here.

Featured Image Credit: The team at IIMMPACT

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