Safaricom launches M-Pesa in Ethiopia
“Safaricom, which is part owned by South Africa’s Vodacom (VODJ.J) and Britain’s Vodafone (VOD.L), launched its mobile network in [Ethiopia] last year… It became the first private telecoms provider after the government in 2019 liberalized a sector that had long been dominated by the state-controlled Ethio Telecom.” Nasdaq.
Kaduna State becomes first state to domesticate the Nigerian Startup Act
“As of March 2023, only 12 of the country’s 36 states had indicated an interest in domesticating the Act…Of the twelve, Kaduna State has become the first to domesticate the Act following the signing of a law for the Development of Tech-Enabled Startups in Kaduna State. The state governor, Senator Uba Sani, signed the bill on Wednesday, July 12, 2023.” Techpoint.africa.
Worldcoin ignored orders by the Kenya Office of the Data Protection Commissioner in May to cease iris scans in the country
“The ODPC had in May this year instructed the crypto startup to stop iris scans and the collection of facial recognition and other personal data in Kenya, a letter sent to Worldcoin and seen by TechCrunch shows. Tools for Humanity, the company building Worldcoin, did not stop taking biometric data until early this month when Kenya’s ministry of interior and administration, a more powerful entity, suspended it following its official launch.” Techcrunch.
CcHub CEO named Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy
“After scaling through a grueling ministerial screening, Bosun Tijani has been named minister of communications, innovation, and digital economy, according to a list conveying ministerial portfolios unveiled on Wednesday. The CcHub CEO, whose nomination has signified new heights for Nigeria’s tech ecosystem, had faced opposition from lawmakers over his critical tweets about Nigeria’s politics and politicians.” TechCabal.
Banking & Telecom Activity
Mastercard to acquire minority stake in MTN’s fintech business; Mastercard also invested in part of Airtel’s mobile money business in 2021
Egypt – Fintech giant, Fawry, announces plans to add business lending to its portfolio after receiving preliminary approval from the Financial Regulatory Authority Egypt – Jumia looks to soon launch Buy Now, Pay Later solution in Egypt as the company aims to drive usage of its JumiaPay app Ethiopia – Private mobile money service, Kacha, receives approval from National Bank of Ethiopia to launch full-scale commercial operations Ghana – AgriTech startup, Oyster, raises $310k USD in grant and debt funding to help the company scale its mission Kenya – eCommerce startup, MarketForce, is raising $1m USD through crowdfunding platform, Capitalize Kenya – Institutional lending startup, Ed Partners, raises $1.5m USD in debt funding to provide financing to private schools Nigeria – Fintech startup, Moniepoint, introduces consumer app and debit cards as the company enters the personal banking market, challenging OPay and PalmPay
Founders Factory Africaraises $114M USD from Mastercard Foundation and Johnson & Johnson Impact Ventures
How to de-risk your investments as an angel investor – Levi Cee
“A cohesive and capable team is often indicative of a startup’s potential for success. There’s a startup adage, “Invest in people, not just ideas”, which holds profound truth in the context of angel investing. The founding team’s expertise, experience, and cohesion are critical factors that significantly influence a startup’s journey.” Benjamindada.com
Amazon launches first non-US-based Skills Centre in Cape Town, South Africa
“The new Cape Town facility is specifically designed to expand workforce development programs and transformation strategies in the local community. One of the primary objectives is to level the playing field through free education initiatives for nontechnical workers, helping to meet the growing need for skilled cloud talent.” Benjamindada.com
AFTS in the headlines
More than just another conference… AFTS is the confluence of the Pan-African fintech industry!
How do we move the industry forward? How do we remove impediments to innovation? How do we help drive digital transformation and inclusion? What is needed from industry players to maximize fintech’s positive impact? These are the questions #AFTSLusaka will help answer! Register today!!!