Please solemnly declare, with one hand on your chest and the other on the mouse (or screen), "I will make money. I will impact my world." Why? Because of next time, sometime in the nearest future, when people ask, "Who is Mr I-have-made-money in Nigeria?" I want U to be the answer.
Trivia: 87% of Nigeria’s economy is transacted in cash. Four-fifths of Nigerians had never heard of mobile money. Banks and telecoms providers don’t want tech startups on their turf. Policies to stimulate greater mobile money use is a must—Africa Leapfrog Index
In this newsletter, most of the items are marinated in money. If you have chrometophobia, skip to the end and retrieve your gift.
Kuda, formerly Kudimoney, has raised $1.6 million in pre-seed round ahead of its official launch later this year. Ragnar Meitern—an early investor in Monese and Bolt—and Startupbootcamp participated in the pre-seed round. Last year, Kuda was one of the 10 startups that participated in Startupbootcamp's accelerator programme. According to the CEO of Kuda, Babs Ogundeyi, the funds raised (~₦580 million) will be used to expand and equip their software development and customer support teams with the best tools, and ultimately, launch out of beta before the end of 2019.
10 months after Kudimoney began operations as an online lender in 2017, the team realized that the lack of credit is not the only problem people have, they also lack proper money management. Hence, the team began to build a full digital-only bank, which culminated in its rebranding in June 2019 to Kuda Bank after securing a banking licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria. It recently released Kuda cards too.
AfriLabs and the African Business Angel Network (ABAN) have launched Catalyst, a co-investment fund that will match investments from qualifying investors to African growth-stage companies. The first Catalyst co-investment fund will be available later this year; funds are currently being raised from various institutional partners to add to the pool.
To participate, startups must register through hubs that are part of AfrilLabs network, which boasts of 158 hubs across 45 African countries. In Nigeria, the member-hubs include Roar Nigeria Hub, Ennovate Lab, Nicademia Hub, TVCLabs and Devamplify Hub.
Prosus, a new global internet consumer group by Naspers, has listed on the sixth biggest stock exchange in the world, Euronext. Valued at $105 billion when it listed, Prosus has become one of the biggest tech companies in Europe. Unlike other big techs like Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google, Prosus doesn't provide any digital service or product. Instead, it invests in tech companies. Prosus comprises of all international internet assets of Naspers, such as Tencent, Udemy, Codecademy, Sololearn, SimilarWeb, mail.ru, OLX, letgo, PayU, iFood and Swiggy.
This listing of Prosus was approved by shareholders at an Extraordinary General Meeting last month. According to the CEO of Prosus and Naspers, Bob van Dijk, the listing of Prosus reduces the company's weight on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange—from 25% to 15%—and it will open up a pool of new investors.
Nigerian Stock Exchange plans to launch a mobile app to boost participation in the Nigerian capital market. The iOS version of the app, called X-Mobile, is currently in beta and the Android version will be available soon. X-Mobile will allow investors to have real-time access to the activities on the Nigerian bourse, as it features market snapshot, prices of stock, market analytics, financial news, trade simulation and directory of dealing members.
According to the Divisional Head of Trading Bussiness at the NSE, Jude Chiemeka, the launch of X-Mobile is in line with the NSE's strategy to leverage technology to improve the operations on the market. Jude said: "This is one of the ways we are contributing to the attainment of Nigeria’s National Financial Inclusion Strategy of reducing the proportion of adult Nigerians that are ﬁnancially excluded to 20 per cent. The app will support our efforts at financial literacy and inclusion by bringing the capital market to the fingertips of market enthusiasts and spark new interest from potential investors”.
Playfre, a Lagos-based music streaming service, has restricted access to only five African countries. The four-month-old service says anyone outside Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya and South Africa will not be able to use its platform. Launched in May 2019 by the co-founder of Publiseer, Chika Nwaogu, Playfre brags to be Africa's Spotify--since the Swedish music streaming service has decided to be available only in South Africa.