Zimbabwean technology entrepreneur Perseus Mlambo who founded card-issuing fintech Union54 in Zambia last year has raised US$12 million in seed capital.

Union54 hopes to create a homegrown African alternative to Mastercard or Visa card.

This would enable software companies to issue and manage debit cards without a bank or third-party processor.

This would work just like an account holder who uses a Mastercard-branded card to make a purchase with a merchant.

When the transaction is authorized, the issuer bank pays the cost of the transaction (minus an interchange fee, also known as a swipe fee) to the acquirer bank.

Apparenyly, In its first seed round 6 months ago, Union54 raised US$3 million.

Commenting on the initiative, Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema said Zambia would be an innovation hub.

“Zambia will be a hub of innovation, modern development and opportunity at the heart of our region.

“We are proud to see more young people dreaming big and taking charge,” he said.