Dash CEO placed on ‘indefinite administrative leave’ as the Insight-backed startup carries out financial audit

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Prince Boakye Boampong, nan laminitis and CEO of Dash, which provides an replacement costs web pinch connected wallets allowing relationship betwixt mobile money and slope accounts successful Africa, has allegedly been temporarily suspended pending an investigation into financial impropriety, according to group pinch nonstop knowledge of nan situation.

Boampong founded nan Ghanaian fintech successful 2019 and is 1 of Africa’s well-known serial entrepreneurs aft co-launching OMG Digital, a YC-backed Ghanaian media startup, successful 2016. For nan clip being, nan committee replaced him pinch Kenneth Kinyua, nan erstwhile CEO of Kopo Kopo, a Pan-African payments business, who precocious joined Dash for a location activity domiciled successful East Africa. Kinyua assumes nan domiciled of interim CEO.

Last March, nan Ghana-founded and New York–headquartered Dash raised $32.8 cardinal successful equity from Insight Partners, Global Founders Capital, 4DX Ventures and ASK Capital, among others. The seed round, which according to sources, weighted Dash astatine somewhat complete $200 million, was nan second-largest woody of its benignant aft PalmPay’s $40 million successful 2019. It besides signified Insight Partners’ first lead finance into an African startup; nan $20-billion behemoth took portion successful Flutterwave’s Series C information successful 2021. 

Before raising complete $30 million, Dash initially wanted to raise a 4th of that money, astir $8 million, arsenic its seed round. It had done truthful by October 2021 disconnected nan backmost of acquiring astir 200,000 users and processing $250 cardinal successful transaction volume. By March of 2022, 5 months aft its first seed tranche, Dash’s full processing measurement topped $1 cardinal and had acquired a cardinal users from Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria, Boampong told TechCrunch successful nan March interview. That’s a 4x boost successful transaction measurement and a 5x emergence successful personification count wrong 5 months. The accelerated growth, coupled pinch nan fintech roar of 2020–2021 that spilled into nan first 4th of 2022, allowed Dash to tie caller investors arsenic it reopened and quadrupled its seed round.

In retrospect, though, nan personification and transaction measurement maturation that Dash reported wrong that short play whitethorn not person been wholly supra board, arsenic its maturation figures importantly differed from what TechCrunch usually sees astir really different user fintechs standard successful Africa. 

Indeed, sources told TechCrunch that Boampong was allegedly suspended arsenic main executive for engaging successful financial misreporting. However, Dash’s board, successful a associated statement, communicated a different perspective regarding nan erstwhile chief’s existent position to TechCrunch. Without offering a remark aliases providing circumstantial discourse connected Boampong’s wrongdoing, a spokesperson for nan committee said it placed nan CEO connected “indefinite administrative time off connected January 24, 2023, pending a forensic financial audit of nan company.” The audit results mightiness beryllium retired wrong a month, sources say.

On nan interim CEO’s appointment, nan committee stated it is “confident successful Mr. Kinyua’s activity and expertise to execute Dash’s ngo to create a unified payments strategy designed to summation ratio and accessibility for really Africans transact pinch integer money.”

Meanwhile, sources acquainted pinch nan company’s soul operations allege that executives many times concealed financials wrong nan patient and described a disorganized workplace wherever labor resigned and were laid disconnected astatine will. TechCrunch reached retired to Boampong for comment. The laminitis — who, according to group pinch nonstop knowledge of nan situation, sold millions of dollars’ worthy of his shares successful a secondary sale, a world believe that a fistful of African founders participated successful during nan VC roar complete nan past 2 years — didn’t respond.

Dash, a unified payments app combining mobile money and accepted slope accounts, facilitates transactions for consumers and businesses. The fintech’s playbook is akin to Visa aliases Mastercard arsenic it routes payments done banks and telcos sloppy of who issued it. Thus, users from different African countries Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya, tin link their slope aliases mobile money accounts to Dash, salary bills, and nonstop and person money to different users while nan level handles rate conversions. The four-year-old fintech, which besides raised $20 cardinal successful indebtedness capital from TriplePoint Capital past October, generates gross from processing fees, savings, FX fees, measure payments, and subscription fees.

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Editor: Naga

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