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Tech News

Nigeria’s Kuda raises Africa’s all-time seed round of $10 million

Kuda joins the list of other notable startups like Paystack (which was recently acquired by Stripe) and Interswitch that crossed the $1billion valuation benchmark.

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Despite the impact of the pandemic on businesses and income, fintechs in Africa have been in the spotlight recently, due to news of recent growth, acquisition and merger.

In a recent development, Kuda, a Nigerian startup that operates a popular mobile-first challenger bank consumers, has announced raising $10 million. This is the biggest seed round ever to be raised in Africa, according to reports by Tech Crunch

The recent announcement is a sequel to an upsurge in the demand for the firm’s services and its ambition of becoming the ‘go-to bank’ not just in the continent, but for Africans living in the diaspora also.

Kuda joins the list of other notable startups like Paystack (which was recently acquired by Stripe) and Interswitch that crossed the $1billion valuation benchmark in the list of startups that make the continent proud.

What you should know

• The $10 million is being led by Target Global, Entrée Capital and SBI Investment, in addition to a host of reputable individual fintech founders and angels.

These individuals include; Raffael Johnen (founder of Auxmoney), Johan Lorenzen (founder of Holvi), Brandon Krieg/Ed Robinson (founders of Stash), and Oliver and Lish Jung (angel investors in Nubank, Revolut, and Chime).

• Prior to this, Kuda had earlier announced that it had raised $1.6 million in a pre-seed round to launch a beta of its services, with one of its founders, Ogundeyi announcing that he is already working on a much bigger series A.

• Following the license of microfinance granted to Kuda by CBN, unlike other fintechs, it manages payment transfers, issues debit cards (in partnership with Visa and Mastercard). It also has partnerships with the incumbent banks’ Zenith Bank, Guaranty Trust and Access Bank for people to come in for physical deposits and withdrawals when needed.

Why it matters

Experts have attributed the recent upsurge and remarkable performance of fintech in Africa to the growing population, as Africa is one of the most populous continents in the world.

In addition, digital inclusion has become intertwined with financial inclusion. So, as the population begins to adopt mobile technology in fullest, those users represent a big potential or market.

There is pent-up demand, and competition is relatively sparse. This has resulted in a number of innovative efforts which leveraged on the growing number of mobile phone users to adapt high demand technological services which make financial transactions cheaper, easier and more efficient.

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Lastly, Nigeria being one of the biggest single economies in Africa — has also been at the centre of a lot of fintech activity, and Kuda has been taking that opportunity by the horns.

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Chidi Emenike is a graduate of economics, a Young African Leadership Initiative Fellow and an Investment Foundations certificate holder. He worked as a graduate Teaching Assistant in the Federal College of Education Kano and is also a trained National Peer Group Educator on Financial Inclusion

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Tech News

Deezer accepts payment in Naira amid stiff competitions with Spotify, Youtube music, Apple music.

Deezer has gained quite a reputation in Nigeria, as it slashes its subscription fee and now accepts payment in Naira.

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Deezer slashes subscription fee and now accepts payment in Naira amid stiff competitions with Spotify, Youtube music, Apple music.

Deezer, the French music streaming platform that has gained quite a reputation in Nigeria has slashed its subscription fee and now accepts payment in Naira.

This is coming a few weeks after Spotify launched in Nigeria and 38 other new markets in Africa.

The competition in the Nigerian music streaming space is getting hotter by the day. More music streaming platforms are entering the Nigerian market with better payment methods and cheaper pricing, thereby forcing existing players to slash their prices so as to hold on to their customer base

Launched in 2007, Deezer currently connects over 16 million monthly active users around the world to 73 million tracks.

Before now, Deezer’s subscription was rated at $4.99 (₦1,800) for premium customers and the family plan for ₦2,700.

This number has been slashed in half. The music platform now charges ₦900 ($2.36) for Deezer Premium, ₦1,400 for Deezer HiFi and ₦1,400 ($3.67) for Deezer Family Plan.

Other streaming players in Nigeria like Apple Music, Spotify, Youtube music, Boom Play, Audiomack and Soundcloud have also slashed their prices.

For YouTube Music, the monthly individual subscription costs ₦900 while a family plan costs ₦1400 ($3.67).

Spotify Premium cost ₦900 per month in Nigeria. The Premium Family plan goes for ₦1,400 for up to 6 family members.

Apple music charges ₦450 per month for students, ₦900 per month for Individual plan while the Family plan goes for ₦1,400 for up to 6 family members.

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Tech News

Netflix competes with TikTok, launches rival product

Netflix has launched a new feature that will allow users to watch, react,r share short clips and more.

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Netflix users increase by 16 million in Q1 2020

Netflix, the world’s leading video streaming platform has launched a new feature called “Fast Laughs” that will allow users to watch, react or share short clips as well as add the show or movie to a Netflix watchlist or you can simply tap the “Play” button to start watching the show immediately.

Similar to Tiktok or Instagram’s Reel, Fast Laughs features full-screen videos that you can swipe through vertically, and places the engagement buttons on the right side of the screen. These buttons let you react to the clip with a “LOL” (crying/laughing) emoji or share it via iMessage or other social media apps, like WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat, or Twitter. The only difference is that there is no comment button yet.

Users can access the feed through the bottom navigation menu by clicking on the Fast Laughs tab. The clips will start playing automatically when one ends another begins.

The feature will include a full-screen feed of funny clips from Netflix’s big comedy catalog including films like “Murder Mystery”, series like “Big Mouth’’, sitcoms like the ‘Crew’’ and stand-up from comedians like Kevin Hart and Ali Wong.

Fast laugh is currently available for iPhone users in select countries, and Netflix will be testing on Android soon.

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