Largest Investment in Nepal’s Tech Industry – F1 Soft / e-Sewa receives Investment from Kantipur Media Group

An exciting breakthrough for the Nepali tech and startup scene sees the largest ever investment made in a Nepali tech company. F1 Soft International, the largest Financial Technology company of the country is said to have received investment from Kantipur Media Group (KMG), the leading media house in the country. The official investment figures have not yet been disclosed. However, rumors are rife that the deal has been concluded on a valuation of around USD 15 million, i.e, approximately Rs. 150 crores. 

The rising startup scene of Nepal had been buzzing around with this rumor for a few weeks. And this news joins two of the powerhouses of different industries complimenting each other. F1 Soft International, with its signature product eSewa and mobile banking applications for different banks, is the largest player in the country’s nascent FinTech Industry. More than 50% of the overall digital transactions including card payment systems as well as various mobile wallets, goes through different products of F1 Soft International. On the other hand, Kantipur Media Group with the recent appointment of its new Chief Executive seems to be shedding light on its search for innovative ventures which could serve the larger market.

The CEO Sambhav Swar Sirohiya, during the announcement, stated his willingness to take the media group beyond its norm. And this huge investment made in one of the nascent but growing FinTech industry looks like a testament to the group’s stated desire. It is widely believed that no more than two percent of the total population has access to the online payment systems. With this investment from Kantipur Media Group, F1 Soft will be in a strong position to widen people’s access towards a digital economy and enhance its market by multiple folds.

F1 Soft International, established in 2004, has made a name for its bold and innovative products since its inception. Led by futuristic entrepreneurs – Biswas Dhakal, Asgar Ali, Subhas Sapkota and Subash Sharma, the company went into the digital economy during 2008/09, way before anyone else in Nepal thought the digital economy could take this height. With the significant traction that F1 built over time, it is well known for receiving multiple partnerships and investment offers from national and international organizations. It seems that the company was waiting for the right investors who could bring not just monetary value but help widen its market and impact.

As the country is heading towards a digital economy with Government’s willingness to recognize FinTech industry with every passing budget, the FinTech leader might be looking to educate the market and strengthen its position in a soon-to-be competitive industry.

How this newly formed partnership takes the road ahead is yet to be seen. However, the historic investment and the mind-boggling valuation is a definite positive for the tech and startup ecosystem of Nepal – sending waves of encouragement and excitement across the country.

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