Egyptian startup Wasla aims to subsidise mobile internet access for over 500 million users in emerging markets over the next few years in the wake of a US$1 million funding round.
Founded in 2018 by ex-Rocket Internet entrepreneurs Serag Meneassy and Taymour Sabry alongside former investment banker Mahmoud El Said, Wasla operates as a mobile web browser, including a localised content and digital services aggregator, that subsidises a user’s mobile data costs by leveraging digital advertising.
The startup allows brands to run targeted adverts, and provides complementary services such as field research and affiliate marketing. Wasla has so far attracted over 100,000 users organically, with no marketing activities, and is now planning on serious growth after raising US$1 million in seed funding late last year.
Meneassy said Africa it wants to subsidise 500 million people’s internet access in the next five years, with a primary focus on the Middle East and Africa, in a bid to foster other types of inclusion.