2021 Nigeria Fintech Week: $321m Raised in 47 Deals in H1, 2021

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Wednesday, October 27, 2021 / 11.55 AM / Ottoabasi Abasiekong for WebTV / Header Image Credit: WebTV

 

About $321m was raised by Nigerian fintech firms in 47 deals for the first quarter of 2021 across the entire industry. The President of the Fintech Association of Nigeria, Mr. Adeolu Bajomo, disclosed this at the opening session of the 5th edition of Fintech Nigeria Week.

 

According to him, Nigeria emerged as one of the top four (4) Fintech hubs in Sub-Saharan Africa and joined the league of 38 countries, producing Unicorns in the global fintech industry.

 

He said the 2021 Nigerian fintech week focusing on the theme "Sustainability and Ecosystem Building" will generate practical ideas on how to move the nation forward.

 

In his keynote address, Raghad Prasad, the Division President, Sub-Saharan Africa, Mastercard, believed Africa is the future for the digital technology revolution.

 

Prasad acknowledged that Nigeria had set the example of a fintech ecosystem that collaborates with other key players from banks to service providers. He noted that Nigeria is at the epicentre of the fintech revolution and remained a crucial player in the region.

 

The Mastercard senior official stressed that one key area that fintech can intervene in Nigeria is deepening financial inclusion across the nation.


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He highlighted the following as areas that need to be addressed to unlock economic opportunities for Nigeria through fintech, which include;

  • Absence of Data infrastructure
  • Scarce capital
  • Inconsistency in regulations
  • Fragmented markets

 

In his remarks via the virtual platform, the MD/CEO of Ecobank Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Akinwuntan, lauded the launch of the "E-Naira" by the Central Bank of Nigeria. He described it as a vindication to the foresight of Fintech Nigeria in driving sustainable development in financial services.

 

He believed that "E-Naira" would democratize access to finance in Nigeria and enable the country to spearhead digital finance in Africa.

 

Akinwuntan said that 2021 has been a remarkable year for the Nigerian fintech industry and was proud that Ecobank has been a founding member of the association since its inception. In terms of gender inclusion,  he noted that 48% of fintech in Nigeria have women in leadership positions.

 

Also speaking at the opening session of the event, Dr. Segun Aina, the Chairman, Board of Trustees, Fintech Association of Nigeria, identified the following areas as critical for the industry to make significant progress;

  • Developing Skills and talents
  • Enabling Regulations
  • Mobilizing Indigenous capital

 

The session featured a fireside chat on the growth and development of fintech and panel sessions on  "Payment as a Catalyst for Development in Africa" and "Femtech: Accelerating Women's Leadership in the Fintech Sector."


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