Africa’s most capitalised startup Flutterwave has secured two new licenses from the National Bank of Rwanda to deepen payments and broaden operations.
In a press release obtained by Investors King, the fintech company was granted Electronic Money Issuer and Remittance Licenses to expand operations in East Africa.
Explaining the importance of the new electronic money issuer license, the company said it will allow Flutterwave to acquire all types of payment instruments in Rwanda while the remittance license will enable $end by Flutterwave to process inbound and outbound cross-border transfers in Rwanda.
With the new licenses, coupled with the company’s existing Payment Service Provider, Flutterwave can now offer money deposit and withdrawal, electronic funds transfer, as well as inbound and outbound remittance services to the 13.46 million people living and working in Rwanda.
Commenting on the new licenses, Olugbenga “GB’ Agboola, Founder and CEO of Flutterwave, said, “From our first transaction to over 400 million now, we’ve remained committed to our vision of connecting all parts of Africa through payments and connecting Africa to the world. As a country well known for fostering innovation and promoting the use of digital technology, Rwanda has always been important to our expansion plans in East Africa.
“We are delighted for the vote of confidence in being granted these licenses. With them, we will leverage our extensive global reach and continuous growth in emerging markets to provide MSMEs in Rwanda with the tools they need to stimulate the economy, facilitate seamless cross-border transactions for Rwandans and support the expansion drive of global and Rwandan businesses.”
Leah Uwihoreye, Flutterwave’s East Africa Regional Lead, Regulatory and Government Affairs, also have this to say, “This is a great achievement for the company. As Rwanda continues executing important reforms to enhance the ease of doing business and implementing its Fintech Strategy 2022-2027, Flutterwave keeps contributing towards achieving a cashless economy by innovating and employing digital technology to support businesses and stimulate the economic growth of countries where we operate. The licenses will enable us to provide safe, secure and seamless payment services for individuals and businesses in Rwanda. This is definitely a starting point for Flutterwave as we continue to expand across East Africa.”
Leatherback Set for International Growth as EFCC Drops all Fraud and Misconduct Allegations
Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has dropped all allegations of fraud and misconduct against Leatherback, a leading financial services technology company, and the company’s CEO, Toyeeb Ibrahim Ibitade.
In November 2023, EFCC announced that it had been made aware of the possibility of fraudulent activities on the Leatherback platform, leading to an investigation into the company’s operations to establish the facts. Cooperating fully with EFCC and working transparently with the organisation’s officials to provide a forensic view of its operations, Leatherback was able to unequivocally prove its innocence, leading the EFCC to drop all allegations and take down all previous communications on its website and social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) around the matter.
Leatherback supported the EFCC investigation by making over 5,000 printed documents available to officials to enable as much clarity as possible. Leatherback also filed Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) in the UK and Nigeria.
According to Toyeeb Ibrahim Ibitade, CEO of Leatherback, “I am relieved to see the end of this arduous episode, but I am even more delighted to see that myself and Leatherback, as an organisation, have been completely cleared of all wrongdoing. With this episode firmly behind us, we are poised to accelerate our mission to provide a single access point that empowers individuals and businesses to be truly global, delivering best-in-class financial, payment, and commerce solutions that remove barriers to global growth and mobility for all citizens of the world.”
Headquartered in London, Leatherback is regulated in the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Canada, India, Pakistan, Nepal, and Sri Lanka, enabling the platform to serve customers across a wide range of markets effectively. Tens of thousands of individuals and businesses already use the platform to support business and lifestyle opportunities every day. Leatherback is also FCA Authorised, PCI DSS Compliant, and ISO Certified.
Leatherback offers financial services to businesses and individuals in multiple countries with no restrictions. Users can access up to 15 currencies from 21 countries, including NGN, GBP, INR, EUR, USD, and many other currencies. Users can also send and collect money locally and internationally, with invoicing, analytics, and permissions features available for businesses.
For more information, please visit: http://www.leatherback.co
Carbon Acquires Vella Finance to Enhance SME Offerings
Digital financial services provider Carbon has completed the acquisition of Vella Finance, a Nigerian fintech company specializing in serving small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
The acquisition, announced through an official statement on Wednesday, signifies Carbon’s strategic move to bolster its SME offerings.
Although the financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, Carbon’s acquisition of Vella Finance, founded two years ago under its parent company, One Credit Limited, underscores its commitment to expanding its footprint in the fintech space.
Vella Finance’s expertise in AI-powered SME banking solutions particularly caught the attention of Carbon.
Through this acquisition, Carbon aims to leverage Vella Finance’s innovative technology to provide actionable insights from financial transactions to its SME customers.
Tolu Adedayo, co-founder and COO of Vella Finance, expressed enthusiasm about the integration, noting that several team members from Vella Finance have joined Carbon following the acquisition.
Adedayo further revealed that Vella Finance’s 8,000 SME customers would be transitioned to Carbon Business in the near future.
Chijioke Dozie, co-founder of Carbon, emphasized the alignment of values and vision between Carbon and Vella Finance, highlighting the potential for synergies and growth in the SME banking segment.
The acquisition marks a significant milestone for both companies as they aim to revolutionize financial services for SMEs in Nigeria.
Flutterwave Set to Recover ₦19 Billion Illegally Transferred by POS Merchants
Flutterwave, one of Africa’s leading fintech companies, is poised to undertake a substantial recovery effort following a High Court ruling granting it the authority to recover ₦19 billion illegally transferred by Point of Sale (POS) merchants.
The company plans to contact over 6,000 account holders across 35 banks and financial institutions to reclaim the funds.
The dispute arose in 2023 when Flutterwave discovered unauthorized transactions conducted by certain POS device merchants, prompting the temporary suspension of implicated accounts to prevent further irregularities.
While the incident didn’t result in the loss of customer funds, it exposed the vulnerability of the system to abuse.
A recent court ruling, known as a Mareva injunction, empowers Flutterwave to initiate the recovery process, targeting account holders who may have received funds from the unauthorized transactions.
This move is critical as the recipients may have already utilized the funds received.
In response to the court order, Flutterwave intends to engage with the relevant authorities to address the situation comprehensively.
It plans to communicate with the affected account holders through email, SMS, and WhatsApp messages, leveraging their respective contact information provided by the financial institutions involved.
The recovery effort underscores Flutterwave’s commitment to upholding financial integrity and protecting the interests of its customers.
The company’s proactive stance reflects the evolving challenges faced by fintech firms in ensuring secure and transparent transactions amidst the dynamic landscape of digital finance in Africa.
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