Tazapay, a Singapore-based fintech company specialising in cross-border payments, has on Wednesday announced that it has raised $16.9 million in its Series A funding round.

Sequoia Capital Southeast Asia led the round, with EscapeVelocity (escp.vc), PayPal Alumni Fund as well as renowned angel investor Gokul Rajaram joining as new investors, Tazapay said in a statement.

Existing investors Foundamental, January Capital, RTP Global and Saison Capital also participated in this round.

According to the statement, Tazapay plans to use the funds to further scale its business across Asia and expand in other regions where the company is receiving strong demand for its services, such as the Middle East and Europe.

This includes the application of payment licenses in major markets that will broaden Tazapay’s payment network globally.

The company will also be beefing up its core capabilities and adding more local payment methods to better serve the growing list of verticals that includes cross-border e-commerce, education technology (EdTech), Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), and travel.

With the advent of open banking and maturing of real-time payment networks like the PayNow service in Singapore and Unified Payments Interface (UPI) in India, there is an increase in expectations from businesses and end consumers for payments to be done in real-time and through a payment method they are familiar with.

With Tazapay, businesses now have access to the firm’s global network of over 170 markets for its card coverage and 85 markets for its local payments collection coverage through a single API integration, thereby allowing them to accept low cost and secure payments from their customers without having to create local entities everywhere.

The company plans to expand its real- time local collection channels to above 100 by the end of this year with this round of funding.

Several of Tazapay’s global customers are already reaping the benefits of this integration, including IndiaMART, India’s leading online B2B marketplace connecting more than 7.4 million sellers and 165 million buyers on its platform; BrightCHAMPS, a leading global live-learning platform with presence in over 30 countries; WTX, a used trucks marketplace platform; Rezlive, a global travel platform and Advantage Club, an employee engagement SaaS platform.

In addition, Tazapay has also partnered with Standard Chartered to offer innovative commerce-enabling payment solutions for enterprise marketplaces.

“After Surge, we are thrilled to have Sequoia Capital Southeast Asia show faith and conviction in our business by leading and participating in this round. We also welcome EscapeVelocity and PayPal Alumni Fund who are joining us as new investors,” said Tazapay Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder Rahul Shinghal.

“These partners will help us realise our vision to be the foremost cross border infrastructure for global platforms as we double down on growing our market presence and consolidating every real-time banking network in the world under one API,

“We are grateful to both our new and existing investors for acknowledging the evolving needs of our ecosystem and supporting our aspirations,” he added.

Aakash Kapoor, Vice President of Sequoia Capital Southeast Asia, said that Tazapay is building the payments and compliance infrastructure for cross-border commerce and services.

“This is a large space which is seeing another inflection point. Buyers increasingly prefer to use local real-time payments over traditional networks and businesses are keen to expand globally without going through the hassle of a local set-up,

“The Tazapay team has unique insights and experience to leverage this tailwind, and Sequoia Capital Southeast Asia is excited to partner with them as they double down on the opportunity,” he added.

Tazapay is a secure digital payment platform for businesses engaging in cross border transactions.

The firm provides a full-stack payment solution including cards and local payment methods globally with buyer and seller protection.

In two years, the firm has built a global network of over 170 markets for its card coverage and 85 markets for its local payments collection coverage and processes hundreds of millions annually.

Founded in 2020 by former executives from companies including Stripe, PayPal, Grab and Standard Chartered, the firm has raised over $18.9 million in funding.

Singapore FinTech firm Pilon secures $5.2M seed funding led by Wavemaker Partners