As more Nigerians adopt digital payments after facing a cash shortage earlier this year, Aladdin, a Lagos-based fintech firm, has introduced a pan-African wallet to ease digital transactions.
The app, which is akin to China’s Wechat or Alipay, is designed to serve the payment and commerce needs of over one billion people in Africa.
Mr Darlington Onyeagoro, the Managing Director of the firm, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lagos that the initiative is packaged to tackle current payment infrastructure struggles, especially in Nigeria.
“Such struggles and hiccups have affected inter-bank and inter-platform payments, leading to significant failures across various channels and platforms.
“The pan-African wallet is designed to effectively serve a large number of customers at the same time.
“It is an ambitious approach which aims to make payments seamless, affordable, and efficient across the continent by fostering interoperability among various payment channels and financial institutions.
“In particular, Aladdin is pioneering this transformative endeavour in Africa by offering comprehensive payment and trade solutions for both individuals and businesses.
“Our innovative product, ‘Payconnect’, is a multi-currency P2P payment marketplace that facilitates global remittance and cross-border payments without the actual movement of funds across borders.
“Additionally, Aladdin collaborates with Pan-African and local banks across different jurisdictions to provide regulatory-compliant onboarding and local bank accounts.
“It simplifies collections and offer global infrastructure for cross-border payments and remittances,” Onyeagoro explained.
He, however noted that payment systems in Nigeria had been relatively good, often surpassing many European and Western counterparts.
“While this might seem unusual, the reality is that Nigeria has been enjoying instant payments for over a decade, a privilege only now emerging in many other regions,” he said.
He said that the progresses had continued to face more challenges with a lot of failures that often discourage many.
According to him, the failures extend beyond Nigeria and affect the entire African continent.
“In most nations in Africa, the payment landscape is characterised by fragmentation, inefficiency, and high costs.
“This fragmented landscape has hindered intra-African trade and the ability to leverage the comparative advantages of each member’ state within the continent.
“To address these challenges, numerous fintech companies and initiatives like the Pan-African Payment System (PAPS) are actively working towards enhancing connectivity and interoperability among banks, mobile wallets and multiple payment channels,” he said.
He described the pan-African wallet as an ambitious approach that would ease transactions for everyone.
“While Nigeria’s payment system stands out for its advancements, there remain substantial challenges and opportunities for improvement across Africa.
“Initiatives like Aladdin, with their pan-African wallet vision, hold the potential to transform the payment landscape, driving economic growth and fostering greater financial inclusion within the continent,” he said.
Onyeagoro urged prospective investors and partners to join the firm in the exciting journey of easing transactions across the continent. (NAN)
Source: News Agency of Nigeria