Among the key emerging trends in payments, financing and investments is the increasing role of financial technology companies. Popularly called fintech, it refers to a broad range of activities using digital technology as its backbone to provide services including peer-to-peer payments, money transfers, mobile banking, asset and wealth managent, insurance and even use crypto-currencies.
In Nigeria fintech companies are guided by central bank regulations pushing for more financial inclusion by bringing in the mass of unbanked Nigerians into the financial system. The ubiquity of phone networks have enabled even more flexibility and mobility to old brick-and-mortar approaches to financial transactions.
Pioneers in this segment include companies like Interswitch, which operates the Quickteller online-payments platform and also issues the Verve cards. In recent years it’s also extended its services to providing short-term loans to subscribers. Another early starter in this area is Etranzact, which offers card-payment services in collaboration with some banks. They have been joined by newcomers including Flutterwave and Paystacks.
After the initial trickle of companies, more have streamed in, with a terrain that is now considerably diversified. In addition to the early companies that mere provided gateways for payments, there are now mobile- money and digital-banking services, micro-insurance providers, wealth management and even digital-currency trading.
How one interacts with these technologies and services have a significant impact on personal finances. Nairaweb will distill all the necessary information to enable more effective deployment of fintech services toward better management of your personal finance.