Africa’s leading fintech unicorn, Flutterwave, faces ongoing legal hurdles in Kenya as approximately $3 million of its funds remain frozen amid government seizure for alleged money laundering and fraud. This second case, following an earlier $52.5 million freeze, is currently before Kenya’s high court, with the fintech awaiting resolution to access the funds.
The $3 million seizure occurred in late August last year, initiated by the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) over money laundering and fraud claims. The first case, involving $52.5 million, was concluded recently, resulting in the release of funds after the ARA withdrew its forfeiture application. However, Flutterwave is yet to access the released funds, and the second case remains unresolved.
The ongoing legal challenges have delayed Flutterwave‘s potential licensing in Kenya. The company expressed confidence, stating, “…we’re confident the outstanding suit is simply open due to usual court processes and will also go the way of the previous one as we’ve been cleared of all wrongdoing.”
Flutterwave’s troubles began in July last year when the ARA accused the fintech of fraud and money laundering, leading to the freezing of millions of dollars. While the new government has dropped some high-profile cases, Flutterwave’s legal journey in Kenya continues amid its efforts to simplify payments in the dynamic African market.
The fintech, valued at $3 billion after a $350 million funding round in 2023, has faced various controversies, including allegations of harassment, funds misappropriation, and mismanagement over the past year.