Neobanks, popularly known as digital banks in Nigeria, are fintech companies that offers mobile applications, software and other technologies to streamline financial services and banking in Nigeria. These digital banks are growing at a faster pace in Nigeria, especially given the fact that they do not charge certain fees imposed on customers by traditional banks and are easy to set up.
Generally, they tend to be more transparent and nimble than megabanks, even though many of them, like Kuda Bank, Vbank etc partner traditional banks.
Here is a list of Digital Banks Operating in Nigeria Presently
- Kuda Bank
- Alat by Wema Bank
Lets quickly look at pros and cons of each of the digital banks in Nigeria
VFD Microfinance Bank is a fully digital bank that offers a wide range of financial products and services to professionals and entrepreneurs across all sectors. The digital bank has over 100,000 downloads on Playstore. They offer zero charges on transactions. Free account maintenance, monthly interest on savings, swift and secure transfers, withdrawals, and bill payments.
- Instant account opening without any paperwork.
- Fingerprint authorization: Login with your fingerprint and authorize transactions using your 4-digit PIN.
- Good customer service.
- Set up and track your spend budgets.
- Order debit cards from the apps.
- USSD banking service available.
- Easy bill payments on the app.
- Target savings with 8% interest rate.
- New update causes app to crash.
- Upgrading KYC takes relatively longer.
Kuda Bank is a free, digital-only bank with a microfinance banking license from the Central Bank of Nigeria. The bank includes tools for tracking your spending habits, saving more, and making the right money moves. They don’t charge card maintenance or account maintenance fees. Kuda has 1M+ downloads on Playstore. Its customers get 25 free transfers to other banks every month.
- Free debit cards.
- Good user experience.
- Free withdrawals at over 3,000 ATMs across Nigeria.
- 15% annual interest rates on savings.
- No paperwork involved when signing up.
- Automatic budgeting tools for easier money management.
- Cards often take a long time to arrive.
- No SMS notification when you get credited.
- No USSD code option for transactions.
- Identity verification takes time.
ALAT is Nigeria’s first fully digital bank, designed to help you do more with your money. Alat is owned by Wema bank. Just like every other digital bank, there is no need to visit a bank to open an account. Alat has over 500,000 downloads on Playstore.
- Free bank card delivery anywhere in Nigeria.
- A Virtual Dollar Card for online payments.
- Bill payments option.
- Collateral-free loans are available.
- Save easily with automated goal saving.
- The virtual card does not yet work.
- Delay in physical card delivery.
Sparkle is a lifestyle and finance app. It is a digital ecosystem providing financial, lifestyle, and business support services to Nigerians around the world. Licensed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Sparkle is all about helping people achieve what they want, whether it’s entertainment, education, saving, or investing in the future. Sparkle has over 100,000+ downloads on the play store.
- Create an account with just your Bank Verification Number (BVN), email address and phone number.
- If you ever lose or misplace your card, you can freeze and unfreeze it in the Sparkle app.
- Save using Sparkle Stash for different goals at the same time.
- Percentage savings where you determine what percentage of your account balance will be going to your savings every day, week or month!
- Get real-time instant notifications for your transactions.
- Bill payments; Pay your bills whenever you want, wherever you are.
- Split bills with friends and family on the app.
- Physical and virtual cards available.
- New update causes the app to crash.
- Reversal on failed transaction takes time.
- Cards can’t be used for international transactions.
- Poor customer service.
MyMintApp is a self-service platform developed for customers to carry out a range of digital and mobile banking transactions on their accounts. It offers customers benefits such as convenience, speed, online real-time access, the security of transactions and options to initiate basic service requests without having to physically visit the bank.
MyMintApp also offers different banking services such as SME Banking, Personal Banking, Corporate Banking, Internet Banking (Electronic Banking), Current Account Opening, Savings Account Opening, Business Services, Loans, e-Business Solutions, Personalized Money Tracking and Card Solutions, etc. Mint has over 10,000+ downloads on Playstore.
- Good customer service.
- Seamless account funding via Paystack or directly from your existing bank account.
- Different saving goals with competitive interest rates to help you save for a targeted purpose.
- Money Manager to help you tag your expenses according to the most common categories, and see real views of how and where you spend monthly.
- Zero transaction fees on bill payments.
- No bonus when you refer someone to the app.
- The selfie verification process takes time.
Onebank brings a whole new financial and non-financial experience to the digital space. This application comes with sophisticated features and an impeccable user experience. It is highly secure, convenient, and easy to use. Onebank also offers payments, lending, investment, advisory, informational, and lifestyle services which brings that intuitive banking experience on your mobile. Onebank is owned by Sterling Bank
- Create a wallet account instantly with your mobile number.
- Biometric authentication.
- Instantly create your virtual card for online shopping and decide the card’s usage and expiry.
- Investments; enjoy up to 100% returns on Naira and Dollar investments.
- Quick loans of up to N5 million in 5 minutes.
- Receive money from Onebank user via QR code scan.
- Pay for airline tickets, cable & internet subscription directly on the app.
- Cardless withdrawals are available.
- Prone to error when you try to sign in.
- Bad user experience.
- Transaction history only shows debits and not credit transaction.
- Failed transactions take time to be reversed.
- Difficulty when you try to switch devices.
Rubies is a digital bank that disrupts regular banking by providing 100% digital top-notch services and technology at its peak. With Rubies, you can decide what your account number looks like. Rubies give you the financial freedom to do more than just banking and the app has garnered over 100,000 downloads on Playstore.
- No maintenance fees.
- Free Debit Cards: Also comes with an option of free delivery.
- Independent Banker: Refer people and earn every time they transact on Rubies.
- Customizable Account: Decide what your Account Number looks like.
- Proximity Transfer: Transfer money easily to friends on Rubies around you with a single tap.
- Open Account: Get an account on the fly, from anywhere (App, Website).
- Request Money: Request funds from friends on Rubies with a single button.
- Verification process takes time.
- BVN verification unstable.
- App downtime takes more than 24 hours to resolve.
- Difficulties upgrading account.
Appzone Launches Next Generation Payment Infrastructure for Africa on Blockchain
Appzone Group, sub-Saharan Africa’s leading fintech software company has announced the launch of Zone, the continent’s first blockchain platform for payment processing that facilitates local and Intra-African payments in fiat and digital currencies.
Developed by Appzone Switch, a subsidiary of Appzone Group, Zone forms the foundation of Appzone’s plans to build out Africa’s first decentralised payment network, which will allow inter-bank transactions to be processed directly between banks without the involvement of any intermediary.
Fintechs and banks within countries across Africa have traditionally performed inter-bank payments through centralized Electronic Financial Transaction (EFT) switches which serve as single points of contact between the financial institutions and handle settlement at defined intervals although they usually cause major downtime when they fail and generate reconciliation issues in certain situations. Zone enhances this by providing a decentralized architecture where each participating institution connects directly with all others so that there is no need for central infrastructure and no single failure can affect the entire network.
Zone significantly reduces transaction processing costs and improves the customer experience for end-users while ensuring that beneficiaries always get instant value for each transaction and that settlement can happen in real-time. For Intra-African payments, Zone provides a real-time settlement layer with a fiat-backed digital token for settlement that allows Banks and payment companies to process transactions across countries without worrying about how, and in which currency, to effect the settlement.
With 10 commercial Banks in Nigeria already connected to the network, Zone provides Banks and Fintechs with simple APIs for various types of transactions including account-to-account transfers, merchant payments, and cash transactions at ATMs or agent locations. The platform’s architecture achieves high throughput and record transaction success rates while eliminating typical reconciliation issues that delay refunds to customers where necessary.
According to Uche Elendu, CEO of Appzone Switch “Zone Switch represents the cashless and borderless future of payments in Africa. With an unprecedented level of network redundancy and security, the platform will eliminate the systemic risk associated with centralized payment systems while delivering the uptime and throughput required in a truly cashless society.’’
In addition to core functionality like payments authorization, and real-time settlement, the team at Appzone Switch are looking to evolve the platform’s digital token for settlement into a stable Pan-African digital currency that is fully compliant, approved by Central Banks, and backed by a basket of fiat currencies in Africa. The idea will be for Zone to manage stablecoin wallets for regular individuals on the same distributed ledger that currently facilitates payment authorization and settlement.
By connecting every financial service provider to this decentralized payment network, Appzone Switch envisions a future beyond cash where payments are frictionless and instantaneous within and between every African country so that Africa can accelerate trade and economic prosperity.
Mondia Digital and Mondia Pay join Vodacom’s VodaPay Super App offering
Mondia Digital, a consolidation of the Mondia Group‘s digital content distribution business, an end-to-end, product-centric and data-driven company with a focus on opportunities in the B2B segment, and its digital payments company, Mondia Pay, are proud to have contributed their expertise and innovative payment, content and B2B platforms to Vodacom’s VodaPay “Super App”, which launched in South Africa in August 2021.
The VodaPay Super App, designed in collaboration with Alibaba Group-owned fintech services platform Alipay, allows consumers to do everything from paying bills to sending money, playing games and ordering takeaways. The VodaPay Super App offers consumers a single point of entry and payment platform, with no additional download required.
Mondia Digital has integrated all of its technology, content and services into the easy-to-use VodaPay Super App environment. It is also responsible for connecting third-party content providers into this ecosystem.
Mondia Digital will make a selection of its custom content platforms available through the Super App, including: Mum and Baby – a free-of-charge mobile health intervention that provides maternal, neonatal and child health information designed to encourage good health practices; Vodacom’s vLive app – a lifestyle and entertainment mini-ecosystem within the Super App that uses gamified elements to manage subscriptions to Mondia’s 123 Kaboodle kids content service; Playinc., a comprehensive gaming portal; and My Muze, a 360º music portal.
Mondia Digital has also co-created many of Vodacom’s key branded services on the Super App platform.
In addition to content integration, Mondia Pay has rolled out the provision of its seamless, contactless Direct Carrier Billing (DCB) payment service to the VodaPay Super App. DCB allows customers to make payments conveniently and securely by charging them to their mobile phone bill. Mondia Pay’s DCB service is used by tens of millions of customers across the Middle East and Africa, and provides a highly scalable payment gateway that both customers and merchants can trust.
DCB is seamless, with no need to sign up for any additional accounts or fill out any forms. Payments are completed in a matter of seconds and provide the best checkout experience on mobile devices, where filling out forms is time consuming and cumbersome. Making payments with DCB is secure. No personal data is transmitted during the payment process so there is no need to worry about identity theft.
Paolo Rizzardini, CEO of Mondia Digital, said, “We are committed to the continuing digitalisation of Africa, and the VodaPay Super App B2B ecosystem is an exciting opportunity in this regard. The future of digital content consumption is going to be driven by innovative partnerships that offer compelling and convenient consumer solutions. Our growth across Africa has been driven by our ability to create consumer-centric products with outstanding digital content, and secure long-term, fruitful partnerships with some of the most innovative and dynamic companies on the continent. Our enduring relationship with Vodacom continues to deliver value for consumers and a growing ecosystem of third-party businesses alike.”
Simon Rahmann, CEO of Mondia Pay, said, “The VodaPay Super App is an exciting environment in which to implement our DCB platform. All-in-one environments offering seamless access and seamless payment are the future of customer and business ecosystems. By offering consumers a simple, fast and secure way to pay for services using their mobile phone, we not only encourage financial inclusion, but we make it easier for local and global developers to offer their services to millions more people.”
Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub said, “Our partnership with Mondia Digital and Mondia Pay strengthens our access to world-class technology and expertise, and leverages their experience across the MEA regions in developing strong, valuable partnerships and delivering seamless payment and content platforms. We want to drive financial inclusion, enhance the business-to-business ecosystem and transform the fintech environment in South Africa, by offering the capabilities of the VodaPay mini programs to as many businesses, of all sizes, across multiple industries as possible.”
While the Super App will be accessible to customers on any mobile network, it will be zero-rated for Vodacom users. The VodaPay Super App is set to be rolled out in other international Vodacom markets.
Developers and businesses are invited to join the VodaPay ecosystem by building their own “mini programs” – third-party, downloadable sub-applications run within the super app.
Some 70 businesses have already signed up or have committed to building their own mini programs in the app, including Big Blue, FlightSite, Dollar, Thrifty, West Pack, Petzone, NetFlorist, Kitkat Cash & Carry, Droppa, Planet54, Jacaranda FM, KFC, and Booking.com.
Mini programs can accept both physical and online payments from customers with the in-app VodaPay digital wallet. Customers can choose to pay upfront, with rewards, or with payment terms such as buy-now-pay-later and nano-credit offerings.
Fintech TagPay Rebrands to Skaleet
From today, TagPay will be known as Skaleet, an international fintech company offering a back-end technology platform. Its core banking platform is fully interactive with an ecosystem of banks, fintechs and technology partners.
It has the speed and agility required to quickly launch new personalized services to the market. Skaleet’s ambition is to bridge the gap between complex financial products and customers’ changing needs.
In this new digital world, Skaleet helps financial institutions become faster and more agile in adapting to their customers’ changing needs by offering innovative services. Our range of services allows banks, neobanks and fintechs to stay in the race against the Big Tech threat that is attempting to dominate this market.
Skaleet’s platform offers complete banking solutions for the day-to-day management of retail banking: onboarding, AML-CFT, bank accounting, regulatory reporting, card issue, SEPA, bank accounts, credit engines and a best-of-breed approach to facilitate the integration of key product and technology partners.
Breaking the banking industry’s IT glass ceiling to increase performance and innovation
With its flexible, modular and natively digital banking platform, Skaleet’s ambition is to innovate by offering new services to fully respond to the latest challenges facing the banking and financial markets, as well as to the growth and scalability requirements imposed by the rapid digitalization of the sector.
Skaleet enables banks and financial institutions to leverage its cloud-native platform to accelerate the launch of new financial services that fully meet their customers’ needs.
Yves Eonnet, CEO of Skaleet, said: “Our mission is to support the digital transformation of banking institutions, neobanks and fintech companies. Our ambition is to become the leading technology platform for digital core banking, offering our customers all the financial services they need.”
The company’s mission statement: to put technology at the forefront of the transformation in financial services
Fifteen years ago, Hervé Manceron and Yves Eonnet set out to take advantage of the latest technological innovations to support new ways of providing mobile financial services. This led them to launch TagPay, a technological platform for managing mobile money accounts.
In 2014, eager to respond to the increasing importance of digital technology and changing customer needs, the publisher launched a next generation international core banking system solution. The ambition of this platform: to accelerate the launch of new, competitively priced services. TagPay has developed a cloud-native platform to meet the needs of financial service providers. Cloud-agnostic, agile and scalable, it has quickly become a leading platform for many financial institutions across the world. At the beginning of the year, TagPay reached a new step by announcing its largest funding: €25M from our new investor Long Arc Capital to enrich its offering and accelerate its international growth.
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