African cross-border fintech, Chipper Cash has raised a $6 million seed round led by Deciens Capital. The development is to expand its footprint across the African continent, with the Southern African region marked as the next hunting ground.
The San Francisco-based firm offers mobile-based, no fee, P2P payment services in six countries: Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria, Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya.
The company expanded into Nigeria three months ago, a year after its establishment, and has raised $6 million from previous investors like Deciens Capital and new backers like Boston-based Raptor Group.
It had previously raised $2.4 million in May 2019 from capital ventures like 500 Startups and Liquid 2 Ventures, which was co-founded by American football legend, Joe Montana.
Essence of recent fundraising: Chipper Cash plans to expand its operation across Africa, and intends to set up camp in Southern Africa. Although the company didn’t disclose the country it aims in the region, with South Africa being the second-largest economy in Africa and boosting of a ripe tech market, one won’t be surprised if Chipper Cash set base there.
While speaking about the ambition of the startup, its Chief Executive Officer, Ham Serunjogi told Tech Crunch, “Southern Africa is an area we’re looking to expand to in 2020.” South Africa will make more sense as the country has the highest mobile penetration in Sub-Saharan Africa with 61%, well ahead of Nigeria that accounts for 32%, according to Geopoll’s report.
Chipper Cash makes an inroad into a new market once it raises funds. It did the same in September when it expanded its services into Nigeria’s tech space after securing the $2.4 million.
The San Francisco-based startup appointed co-founder of Gokada (Lagos-based ride-hailing startup), Abiodun Animashaun to run its operation in Nigeria as the Country Manager.
Meanwhile, Fintech’s popularity in Nigeria is growing beyond control. The market is becoming saturated with the likes of Paga, Flutterwave, OPay, Palmplay and other unpopular fintech platforms competing for the same market to service about 40 million smartphone users, according to Statista.
So, movement across Africa’s tech space is expected to expand revenue opportunities for Chipper Cash. The continent offers a customer base of about 123.7 million (inclusive of Middle East population) smartphone users. The startup already has offices in Ghana and Kenya, both of which accounts for 35% and 30% mobile penetration in Africa. Senegal records 34% behind South Africa.
Speaking on how the company intends to compete, Serunjogi said, “Money doesn’t buy product-market fit. It doesn’t buy ultimate success in this space. By offering our product for free, we’re not in a pricing war or competing on a dollar-to-dollar basis. We’re in a pure utility war on who can provide the most value to our users. We’re quite comfortable with our position, and our long-term value proposition will speak for itself over time.”
FG to take delivery of first set of Covid-19 vaccines in February
The FG has announced that the country expects to take delivery of its first set of Covid-19 vaccine doses in February.
The Federal Government has announced that the country expects to take delivery of its first set of Covid-19 vaccine doses in February, with health workers, vulnerable people and top government officials to be given priority.
These vaccines are expected to be procured through the Covax initiative which is backed by the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi the Vaccine Alliance, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation.
According to a report from Bloomberg, this disclosure was made in an interview by the Executive Director/Chief Executive of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Faisal Shuaib, who said that as many as 100,000 doses of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine, would be purchased.
What the Head of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency is saying
Shuaib said that the first batch of the vaccines, which is enough for a maximum of 50,000 people, equivalent to about 0.00025% of Nigeria’s population, would be allocated to health-care professionals working in Covid-19 isolation centres and those supporting them, as well as the country’s senior political leaders.
He said, “We are waiting for final confirmation from Covax on when the first doses will arrive. A most recent indication is they’re expected in February.”
What you should know
- It can be recalled that the Federal Government, had initially announced that it was expecting the first set of Pfizer Covid-19 vaccines to be available at the end of January through the Covax initiative.
- The Minister of State for Health, Olurunnimbe Mamora, had also said that the country was yet to purchase any Covid-19 vaccine as the country was still assessing the prices of different shots, their availability and the logistics required for a nationwide roll-out.
- Shuaib revealed that the Federal Government had acquired 3 ultra-cold freezers to keep the Pfizer vaccines at the required temperature. He said that in the longer term, the government planned to invest in vaccines that were easier to store, such as those created by AstraZeneca Plc, and the University of Oxford.
- Nigeria, with a population of more than 200 million people, plans to vaccinate about 70% of its population in the long run and is working on other options, besides Covax, for supplies.
Nigeria records 1,964 new cases of Covid-19, highest daily surge
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control announced that 1,964 new cases of the covid-19 virus were recorded on Thursday
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, on Thursday, 21st January 2021, announced that 1,964 new cases of the Covid-19 virus were recorded across 24 states in the country.
This represents the highest number of cases recorded in a single day. It also represents a 41.7% surge compared to 1,386 cases recorded on Wednesday, 2oth January 2021.
According to the NCDC, the cases were recorded across 24 states; Lagos State recorded the highest with 824 new cases, representing 41.9% of the total daily cases.
Others include: FCT (246), Plateau (166), Kaduna (128), Ogun (76), Nasarawa (74), Anambra (69), Edo (50), Rivers (45), Ondo (44), Niger (40), Oyo (38), Adamawa (35), Kano (31), Akwa Ibom (27), Gombe (19), Kwara (13).
More details shortly…..
Buhari reappoints Bala Usman as MD of NPA, reconstitutes the Board
President Buhari has approved the reappointment of Hadiza Bala Usman as the MD of the NPA for another term of 5 years.
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the reappointment of Hadiza Bala Usman as the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) for another term of 5 years.
This follows the expected expiration of the tenure of Usman, who was first appointed as the Managing Director on July 12, 2016.
This disclosure is contained in a series of tweet posts which was issued by the Presidency on its official Twitter handle on Thursday. January 21, 2021.
The Presidency in its statement also announced the approval of the reconstitution of the Non-Executive Board of the NPA, with Emmanuel Olajide Adesoye (representing South-West zone) as Chairman.
The statement from the Presidency partly reads, ‘’President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the re-appointment of Hadiza Bala Usman as Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), for an additional five-year tenure.
‘’Also approved is the reconstitution of the Non-Executive Board of the NPA, with Emmanuel Adesoye (from South-west zone) as Chairman.’’
Other members of the reconstituted Board include Ekenyem Nwafor-Orizu (representing South-east zone), Akinwunmi Ricketts (representing South-south zone), Ghazali Mijinyawa (representing North-East zone), Mustapha Dutse (representing North-West zone), and Abdulwahab Adesina (representing North-Central zone).
What you should know
- Hadiza Bala Usman was born on January 2, 1976, in Zaria, Kaduna State and has a B.Sc. Business Administration from Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria and a Post Graduate in Development Studies from University of Leeds, the UK in 2009.
- She worked at the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) from July 2000 to August 2004 as Enterprise Officer and hired by the UNDP for the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) from October 2004 to January 2008 as Special Assistant to the Minister on Project Implementation.
- Ms Bala Usman worked, between 2011 and 2015) as Director of Strategy of the Good Governance Group, a non-governmental organisation founded by Kaduna State State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, and his friends.
- Ms Bala Usman, one of the founders and conveners of #BringBackOurGirls, a campaign group pushing for the rescue of the abducted Chibok schoolgirls, was also a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on Anti-Corruption.
- Prior to her appointment as the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority, she was the Chief of Staff to Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna, apposition she was appointed to in 2015.
Also approved is reconstitution of the Non-Executive Board of the NPA, with Mr Emmanuel Olajide Adesoye (South-west zone) as Chairman.
— Presidency Nigeria (@NGRPresident) January 21, 2021