Paywatch secures RM141 million funding to expand its earned wage access solution

Paywatch Raises US$30 Million in Funding for Earned-Wage Access Service Expansion

Paywatch, an earned-wage access (EWA) service provider, has secured a significant amount of funding amounting to US$30 million (approximately RM141 million). This funding includes a Series A equity investment of over US$14 million led by Third Prime and a consortium of US investors, as well as credit facilities of US$16 million from global banks like Citi.

The startup, which offers a debt-free EWA solution, allows workers to access a portion of their earned salary in real-time before their payroll cycle ends. This innovative employee benefit aims to reduce employees’ reliance on loans, improve financial management, and enhance company productivity.

Founded by brothers Richard and Alex Kim, Paywatch has processed over US$58 million in salaries to date, making it the largest EWA service in Asia by transaction volume. The company plans to expand further in Southeast Asia and expects to disburse over US$120 million in salaries by the end of the year.

The funding round also saw participation from new investors Octagon Venture Partners and Wooshin Venture Investment Corp. Paywatch’s commitment to financial inclusion has attracted notable investors like Vanderbilt University and University of Illinois Foundation, marking the first time these US-based endowment funds have directly invested in an Asia-based tech startup.

With a focus on accessibility and affordability, Paywatch charges a nominal fee of 50 cents per transaction or offers free transactions when used to pay bills. This approach aligns with the Malaysian government’s efforts to reduce income disparity and promote financial resilience, supporting the country’s digital economy transformation.

Overall, Paywatch’s recent funding will enable the company to expand its services, integrate with Malaysia’s digital infrastructure, and contribute to the nation’s socioeconomic development.

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