Earlier this year saw kora, a Nigerian payments infrastructure startup receive its commercial Payment Solution Service Provider (PSSP) license from the Central Bank of Nigeria. The PSSP licence is to drive its vision of powering payments across Africa. It is also in the process of obtaining the same licence in both Kenya and South Africa. Kora was originally into remittances and has processed over $1.5 billion in transaction volume in only Nigeria and Kenya in 2021. With the PSSP, it was now poised to simplify payment within Africa and build wealth for the continent. The startup’s APIs enable African businesses in 25African countries to accept payments (pay-ins), disburse them (pay-outs) and do cross-border transfers (settlements).
Some of the popular APIs are already available in Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda while the Kenyan payment will become available before the end of q3 2022.
Kora in partnership with the municipal government of Birmingham expanded into the United Kingdom at the end of June 2022. The UK office is located in Birmingham, the fastest-growing region in terms of technology. The office location choice was influenced by the traction, the company was getting from the city as well as the city’s solid infrastructure and ease of access to talent. The expansion deal was brokered by the West Midlands Growth Company, an organisation responsible for driving regional investment promotion and economic development for the West Midlands and the UK. The UK not only wants to beef up its foreign talent in its region after it pulled out from European Union but it also creates initiatives to attract businesses as well. For example, Kora’s office space is free for a while after which they will start paying.
According to kora’s chief operating officer Orovwiroro, their ambition has always been to make Africa open from a financial standpoint, hence expanding to the UK is an important next step for them. This is why they were excited to have a partner in the West Midlands Growth Company whose ambition is aligned with theirs; to remove barriers to local and global commerce. So when they got the offer to take kora to the UK while Midland growth company helps set up the legal and other required UK compliances, they took it to be closer to their global users. Korea was Founded in 2018 by Dickson Nsofor and Bryan Uyanwune. It was built to help Africans in the diaspora make remittances into the continent. However, the company decided to delve into payments completely to enable both businesses in and outside Africa to process payments in and out of Africa.
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Companies like GiG, Juice Africa, dlocal, and PayFuture have already been onboarded. This expansion will enable kora to provide foreign bank accounts to African fintech. On the other hand, they will enable UK companies to power salary payments for their African remote staff.
Kora participated in the 2019 Class of Techstars Toronto Accelerator. The fintech startup later raised $120,000 pre-Seed from Ramen Ventures and undisclosed funding in 2019. This expansion will facilitate the building of a payment infrastructure to help global businesses go local in Africa, and local African businesses go global. Since it had to serve its customers by using the license of its Uk based fintech partners. The expansion is also an opportunity to get its licence.Featured Image Source: Nairametrics
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