One of Kenya’s virtual payment operators, Finserve, has announced a plan to join Ethiopia’s banking market. This is to be a partnership with several local banks and a local fintech firm.
This comes as the administration of Abiy Ahmed (PhD) is set to liberalize a number of sectors; including those in the telecommunication, aviation and some reforms in the government controlled banking system as a strategy to invite a much needed foreign investments to the nation.
The company has been eyeing the Ethiopian market, more specifically, by the decision of the government to set a Diaspora account and allow millions of Ethiopian born citizens to use a modern remittance system to send money to Ethiopia. This is seen as a strategy by the government to relax the foreign shortage and fund local infrastructures across the nation.
With a population of a 100 million people, the World Bank estimates USD 38 Billion worth of remittance payments sent across the East African region.
For Finserve, which has an integrated platform system such as Visa, MasterCard, and others, the vision is to allow a uniform platform across the region and the central African nations and have them use a system for its e-commerce, the remittance markets and merge payment options by a way of mobile apps and online sites. The company has a vision of helping expand the trade volume between the continent and China, which is the largest trading partner in the region valued at USD 120 billion in trade alone.
Once the partnership in Ethiopia is finalized, the regions fastest growing economy will join other nations where Finserve serves customers currently, including Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda in partnership with Airtel Africa – a subsidiary of India’s Bharti Airtel and headquartered in the Netherlands.
The company was founded in 2014 and currently serves a growing nearly 9 million customers.