Mexican Arturo Villanueva, who worked for more than four years in the United States with the financial partnerships team at Stripe, founded the fintech company Alza, which raised USD $6.6 million in an investment round led by Thrive Capital of New York.
In this round, angel investors Henrique Dubugras, co-founder and CEO of Brex, BoxGroup, Sebastián Mejía, co-founder and president of Rappi, Cristina Cordova, COO of Linear, and Sarah Heck, former advisor to the White House under President Obama and head of entrepreneurship at Stripe, participated, according to information reported by TechCrunch.
Arturo Villanueva, the brain behind the Mexican startup, established partnerships with Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and regional banks throughout Latin America and reached strategic agreements with JPMorgan Chase, Wells-Fargo, and Bank of America in the United States.
Alza was created with the aim of providing financial services to all Latin American migrants who came to the United States to work and who, due to their status, do not have access to such services in the country.
What Alza offers is a checking account with insurance from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), as well as a debit card for Latin American migrants living in the United States.
With this injection of capital, the Mexican fintech company can strengthen and further promote its products to benefit a larger number of Latin Americans in need of financial services.
Migrants face various challenges in the United States when trying to access banks and services in the country, including language barriers, cultural differences, and, most importantly, immigration requirements that they often cannot meet.
Alza addresses these issues for migrants, enabling Latin Americans to access the financial services they need while living and working in the United States.
The fintech company also offers migrants the service of sending remittances to their home countries, with competitive prices compared to other options available in the North American country.
Another priority for Alza is its commitment to accessibility and inclusion, which is why the fintech offers its services in Spanish and Portuguese to ensure that migrants feel completely understood.
Alza is revolutionizing the ecosystem of financial services for Latin Americans living in the United States. With the recent investment it received, it will be able to expand its products and benefit more people.
Currently, the fintech Alza offers its services in Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Spain, and Uruguay.
According to the 2022 Migration and Remittances Yearbook by BBVA, it is estimated that remittances to Mexico reached 58,500 million pesos in 2022 and are expected to reach 62,600 million pesos in 2023 (+7.0%).