pawaPay, a mobile payments platform, lands €7.6 million to simplify payments in Africa

pawaPay operates local transactions, compliance, regulatory protection and bank accounts so payments in a new market are easy to receive.


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The payment firm pawaPay located in the UK and Africa has concluded its operations, recruiting talent, and expanding on new markets by financing a round of €7.6 million in early investment. The event was co-managed by the British fund 88mph and MSA Capital from China, with Zagadat Capital, Kepple Ventures, and Vunani Capital participating.

According to the 2015 World Bank estimates, in Sub-Saharan Africa, there are over 350 million unbanked people. In their respective nations, most unbanked people seldom earn the least salary, therefore it’s tough for banks to make money from these people, and creating a bank account takes lots of unappealing KYC (Know Your Customer) requirements.

One thing is sure, the unbanked have mobile phones, and the banks circumvent telecommunications carriers using proxies to build their own systems to allow individuals to safely transfer money with mobile telephones – all at little or no charge for the transfer. This implies that people who are mobile still have access to essential financial services such as savings and transfers.

pawaPay states that in Sub-Saharan Africa there are 66% of worldwide mobile money transactions. Mobile money is Sub-Saharan Africans’ favorite money transfer technique and is still increasing – much. In the Sub-Saharan area, mobile money registered accounts rose 11.9% last year alone. 

pawaPay was founded in 2020 to enable world businesses to accept mobile money as payments to African customers. Its API enables traders to access and transmit payments to thousands of mobile money accounts on mobile money operators.

pawaPay operates local transactions, compliance, regulatory protection, and bank accounts so payments in a new market are easy to receive. In short: it takes and breaks into one API for enterprises the technological integrations from telecom carriers such as AirtelTigo, Econet, MTN, Safaricom, Orange, and Vodafone.

pawaPay was created as part of PawaTech’s payments system, an African market UK software business with a decade of expertise in mobile money creation. In early 2020, pawaPay was established by the investors behind PawaTech as an independent firm.

pawaPay now already has more than 100 million moving money transactions processed per year in 10+ countries, leading mobile money on the continent. At pawaPay we strongly think that mobile money is the future of card and bank transfers in Africa.

Their aim is to link all wallets with each other and the globe for mobile money in Africa. They are building the essential infrastructure for mobile money transfers to empower each individual and every African organization to develop and accomplish more.

The online betting business pawaPay split out last year. The company is headed by CEO Nikolay Barnwell, former Head of New Markets for BetPawa in Africa, who explained to Techcrunch recently: “We are making very serious bets on mobile money and all the complexities arising from mobile money and the infrastructure to be built in terms of mobile money payments at its core.”

“We look at the pace of acceptance for mobile money rising at a foolish speed, as we look across the continent. This is a major financial infrastructure, and much of it is missing if you want to operate really with mobile money and company.” It’s becoming fairly clear.

How big is mobile money in Africa?

More than 350 million unbanked people in sub-Saharan Africa are accounted for by the 2015 World Bank estimates. There are a number of deficiencies in this condition, but from the standpoint of the banks, no motivation leads them to bank these people in fact.

In their various nations, most unbanked people seldom earn a minimal salary, thus it is quite hard for banks to make up the money for such people. Opening the bank account also means that this population subgroup entails many KYC steps.

This enormous market is the reason why the whole continent has mobile money. Telecom operators using proxies have circumvented the banks and established their own systems that allow individuals to safely transfer money using cheap or inexpensive mobile telephones or no transfer fees.

Mobile money and card payment gateways like pawaPay

pawaPay wishes to establish itself as a market leader for large volume payments for mobile money while providing dependability and transparency for traders. The API enables the traders to access and transmit payments to millions of mobile cash accounts by mobile carriers.

pawaPay operates local transactions, compliance, regulatory protection, and bank accounts so payments in a new market are easy to receive. In 10 African states — Camera, DRC, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia, beta transactions are being handled per week, claiming to be more than ten million transactions every week.

The mobile money emphasis of pawaPay was the main reason for this round being headed by Kresten Buch, 88mph Founder and Chairman of pawaPay. “One of the main reasons was that mobile cash was a preferable payment option when using credit and debit cards for online payments,” he stated when 88mph was actively engaged in Africa a decade ago.

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