Whereas m-payment stays dominated by English-speaking gamers, PayDunya, the Senegalese fintech firm intends to impose itself on the West African market, earlier than conquering the remainder of the continent. Inclusiveness and safety are the important thing phrases of the startup, which is multiplying digital options tailored to a neighborhood ecosystem that’s singularly under-banked.
“Our PayDunya platform is designed to strengthen Africa’s digital ecosystem by supporting the digital transformation of businesses, whether formal or informal, and financial institutions,” stated Aziz Yerima, CEO and co-founder of PayDunya.
Launched in 2015 by Youma Fall (Senegal), Christian Palouki (Togo), Honoré Hounwanou (Ivory Coast) and Aziz Yerima (Benin), the concept of making this fintech firm was born on the benches of the college.
“In 2013, I participated in helping a women’s economic interest group in Pikine, as part of a student association. We designed a website for them, but we were not able to pay for the hosting of the site, because we did not have a bank card (…) We then tried to integrate Paypal on the site for customers from the diaspora, but there again, we were faced with a wall, because we did not have a bank account in a Western country. At that point, I realized how excluded we were from online payment financial services” defined Aziz Yerima. “However, even my grandmother has a cell phone, so today any African can access e-payment,” he continued.
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The corporate’s efforts have ultimately paid off
The “PayDunya” journey has not been a sinecure, each by way of partnerships with banks, cellular cash and cash switch operators, in addition to corporations that needed to be satisfied of the deserves of this digital migration. As well as, the startup additionally needed to cope with human sources which might be nonetheless too scarce within the fintech sector on the continent.
However, 5 years later, the outcomes are there. “We have 600 active client companies. For the year 2020, we are reaching an average of 50,000 transactions per day with peaks at 65,000 transactions,” stated the younger entrepreneur. The fintech firm employs 54 workers of about ten totally different nationalities and recorded a turnover of $2.96 million (€2.5 million) in 2019.
The fintech firm presents a number of safety ensures
In line with a research carried out by PayDunya on the eve of the COVID-19 disaster in Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal, regardless of the choice options to the low charges of bankization on the regional degree, practically 47% of respondents stay reluctant to digital technique of fee. “In Africa, when we talk about the Internet, we instantly think of the phenomenon of mobile money scams. This raises some concerns,” defined Aziz Yerima.
A research printed earlier this yr by DataProtect in Morocco revealed that sub-Saharan banks had been notably susceptible to cyber-attacks, estimating the price of cybercrime at $4.14 billion (€3.5 billion) in Africa and $625 billion (€528 billion) worldwide. Of the 148 banks surveyed within the West African Financial and Financial Union (WAEMU) in addition to in Central Africa (Gabon, Congo, and DRC), greater than 85% stated they’d already been victims of cyber-attacks together with bank card fraud and phishing (in about 30% of circumstances).
With the intention to persuade as many customers as doable, the startup has emphasised safety, by way of its PayDunyaSecure program for all operations. Among the many safety protocols put ahead by the corporate, Tokenization, Time Out, OTP (One Time Password), All Or Nothing, API keys, Checksum, PayDunya PAL, are all measures taken by the corporate to reassure frightened clients and persuade prospects. “We should obtain the highest standard in terms of financial transaction security, the PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) by next November,” emphasised Aziz Yerima.
PayDunya: a Paypal for Africa?
“Paypal may have been created by an African, but not for the African market” (Elon Musk, born in South Africa), defined Aziz Yerima who sees a distinct segment to be taken. “Our ambition is pan-African and we have to create our own model,” he defined.
“Originally, we were inspired by Paypal (…) We started with mobile money before launching bank card payment services. We then developed physical means of payment through a network of partner stores. We are gradually enriching our range of solutions. To date, we offer Webpay (receiving payments on the website), Mobpay (receiving payments on mobile application), DmP (sending invoices by email or SMS), Collect (collecting payments on a recurring basis and automated by email and SMS) and Push which allows thousands of people to pay in 1 click on their mobile money, bank or cash accounts. Recently, with Social Shop, corporate customers can create their e-shop on social networks in 5 minutes.”
“There are no large international groups such as Paypal in Africa, because on a continent where the rate of bankization is around 10%, the African market remains very limited,” stated Aziz Yerima. Nonetheless, the state of affairs has been evolving for five years, with out having “reached this economy of scale that would make Africa attractive to these major players,” he added. With an e-commerce penetration fee of two% to three% on common on the continent (15% to 18% in Asia), the sector presents good prospects.
“We must create our own model, like what happened in China. Social Shop – our click and pay solution – is one of the African solutions we offer. We are also developing the “offline to online” by way of our community of companion outlets,” provides Aziz Yerima, including that “everything is free with us. We only get paid if there is a successful transaction to which we apply a percentage, a bit like Paypal. We charge between 1.5% and 3%. For each customer, PayDunya proposes an adapted accompaniment as well as a precise development plan.”
Amongst its successes, the fintech firm counts the help of Fabellashop, one of many main websites of cosmetics in Senegal. Current in Ivory Coast, Benin and Senegal, the startup will enter the market in Mali and Burkina Faso by the tip of the yr.
Lastly, regardless of the well being context which has disrupted PayDunya’s improvement prospects, the startup goals to be current in about twenty international locations within the medium time period, together with within the English-speaking areas of Africa.
(Featured picture by Andrea Piacquadio by way of Pexels)
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