January 30, 2023

Around the world, investing is a trusted and sustainable path to building long-lasting wealth. But unfortunately, in Africa, investing is making the majority poorer because they are limited to local capital markets that are volatile and currency returns that are negatively adjusted by inflation and devaluation. Worst still, most Africans are not investing because they don‘t know how to invest or what to invest in.

Bamboo had solved that and built an online brokerage service that gave Africans real-time access to global investment options. They have spent a few years building a completely frictionless, insights-driven, and unrestricted investing experience for everyone irrespective of geographical location, income level, or financial education.

Their technology provides both retail investors and institutions real-time access to the US Stock market, other global capital markets, and investment products that provide real, inflation-adjusted returns.

Bamboo is an investment platform that gives you real-time access to a stream of global and local investment options instantly and seamlessly from your mobile phone.

Bamboo also gives real-time access to invest in or trade over 3,500 stocks listed on the U.S. stock market or their local exchanges.

With a market cap of over $31 trillion, the U.S. stock market makes up over 85% of all dollars that go into the global markets. Being the first of its kind, Bamboo is unlocking the limitless potential of the global markets for Africans

How it Works

Bamboo offers the Bamboo Fixed Returns – a fixed-income dollar-denominated investment that gives you up to 8% USD annual returns. It takes the risk out of investing while exposing you to all the benefits of being invested, including higher yields than regular dollar savings accounts.

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Bamboo makes it fast and seamless to discover the best global and local investment opportunities. Users can fund their dollar or local currency balance almost instantly and start buying shares and ETFs or investing in Fixed Returns in just a few taps.

Bamboo uses bank-level security and all brokerage accounts are duly held at a top-tier local and U.S. brokerage; as a member of the SIPC, each Bamboo brokerage account is insured up to $500,000. Bamboo is also partnered with SEC-licensed investment managers.

Investing

Bamboo allows you to buy shares in fractions so even if you don’t want to buy 1 whole share, you can buy less. You can buy any stock with any amount you wish to, regardless of the share price.

However, you will need to have money in your Bamboo wallet with which you can start investing in Fixed Returns or stocks. The minimum amount you can deposit in your wallet is $1 for Nigeria and $10 for Ghana.

Fixed Returns

Bamboo offers a fixed-income dollar-denominated investment that gives you up to 8% USD annual returns. It takes the risk out of investing while exposing you to all the benefits of being invested, including higher yields than regular dollar savings accounts.

With Bamboo Fixed Returns you can deposit and lock your money for anywhere between 90 days to a year. You can also create as many fixed-return investments as you want.

Stock Market

The stock market is where companies go to sell parts of their total value to the general public.

By joining Bamboo, they give you the ability to purchase a part of these companies and become a part-owner.

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They also help their customers bypass the whole stress of dealing with brokers directly as they are the link between you – the investor, and the broker.

Additionally, they simplify and make the process more efficient for all parties involved and they currently have over 3,000 stocks available.

Freeriding

When you buy or sell a stock or an exchange-traded fund (ETF), it typically settles in two working days. 

Freeriding refers to buying shares or ETFs and then selling them before the purchase has settled. Freeriding is a violation of the Federal Reserve Board’s Regulation and may result in a suspension of your account on Bamboo.

To prevent a Freeriding violation, you will not be able to sell a stock or ETF you bought on Bamboo with the new deposit until it settles in 1-2 working days.

Bamboo Wallet

Your Bamboo Wallet enables you to easily move money to a Fixed Returns investment or your stock brokerage account for a stock purchase.

On the other hand, you can move money from your stock brokerage account to your Bamboo wallet to withdraw to your bank account or to invest it in Fixed Returns. 

Additionally, once the tenor for your Fixed Returns investment ends, the money will also go to your Bamboo wallet from where you can withdraw it or reinvest it in stocks or Fixed Returns.

When you initiate a stock purchase or a Fixed Returns investment, you will have the option to complete the transaction with money already in your Bamboo wallet or with a new deposit from your bank account or card.

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Founders

Richmond Bassey

richmond bassey

Richmond Bassey is the Co-founder and CEO at Bamboo. 

He served as the Chief Of Staff for Helium Health before that.

Yanmo Omorogbe

Yanmo Omorogbe

Yanmo Omorogbe is a Co-Founder and Director of Growth at Bamboo. 

Before founding Bamboo, she was an Investment Associate at the African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM).

Investors & Funding Rounds

Kepple Africa Ventures, Chandaria Capital, Wes Schwalje, several other non-disclosed investors

Bamboo has raised a US$15 million Series A funding round to accelerate its growth, move into new markets and launch more products.

The US$15 million Series A round was led by Greycroft and Tiger Global with participation from Motley Fool Ventures, Saison Capital, Chrysalis Capital, and Y-Combinator’s Michael Seibel, amongst others.

With the capital, Bamboo plans to further accelerate its growth, doubling down on unlocking new markets and launching more products.

Since Bamboo planned to launch in Ghana, more than 50,000 Ghanaians have joined the waitlist. 

Main Competitors

Chaka Technologies: This is an Investment Passport for Africans and African businesses to trade global capital markets.

Athena: It is an Australian home loan platform that helps to get better home loans.

Paymob: This is a digital payments enabler for emerging markets, helping small and large enterprises accept payments online and in-store.

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