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02 – 10 – 2019

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South African fintech company, Yoco recently launched a new low-cost card reader for merchants called Yoco Go. In an opinion piece for TechCabal, Marcello Schermer explains why the product is crucial for the more than 1 million small businesses un- or under-served by South African banks with digital card payment solutions. Yoco is the country’s largest non-bank mPOS player and currently serves about 50 000 merchants 85% of which have never accepted card payments before.

OPay has turned heads since it entered the Nigerian market. Ostensibly a payments solution, it has launched several new verticals, from bike-hailing to food delivery as it seeks to become a super-app, a one-stop-shop for all your needs. With $50 million in funding, it is well equipped to take on all its ambitions. But a lot remains unknown about this young company. In this long-read article, TechCabal’s Abubakar Idris looks under the hood to answer the fundamental question: What the hell is OPay actually doing?

Chinese smartphone maker, Transsion has debuted on the country’s tech stock market achieving a milestone of the second-largest IPO on the STAR market. The stock soared 96% on the first day of trading before closing at 64%. The company raised a total of US$400 million from the IPO and closed the first day valued at US$6.48 billion. Transsion’s domination of the African phone market has been phenomenal. It currently controls 49% of the market with its Tecno, iTel and Infinix phones and it is now adding services to its suite of offerings.

Kenya’s National Transport and Safety Authority has suspended vehicles within the network of bus hailing services, Swvl and Little Shuttle. The agency said both companies didn’t have the right licenses. Both companies acquired Tour Service Licenses but were operating as commuter service providers instead, the agency reported. The two organizations have issued statements calling for dialogue.

It’s Day 10 of #JollofRoad and the team is now in Ghana! Fu’ad, Toke and Kayode are travelling on a bus through West Africa for 80 days curating their experiences of the food, people and culture. Daily journals and videos are being shared via a dedicated website. Got any suggestions about where they should go in Ghana? Share it with them here.

Last Friday we convened some of the most influential entrepreneurs, investors and policymakers at TC Townhall: Mobility. Our CEO, Tomiwa Aladekomo kicked off the event with a keynote address before the gathering proceeded to the first panel session featuring freight logistics and supply chain entrepreneurs. The event ended with a regulator panel session that included  Mr Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, GM at Lagos State Waterways and Dr Kemi Amure from the Lagos Metropolitan Transport Authority (LAMATA). Here’s a rundown of what went down at the event!

To manage its ailing monetary system, Zimbabwe is cracking down on mobile money services in the country. The government has asked operators to stop paying out cash. It took the decision to solve the issue of multiple exchange rates as agents were charging a premium for transactions. But the decision is problematic given that mobile money is the primary means through which Zimbabweans trade. Ecocash, the country’s largest mobile money operator says it will have to completely shutdown to implement the new directive. The platform has 6.4 million active users with 2 million of them completing 7 million transactions daily. The effects of the shutdown could be devastating for residents.

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has banned the MacBook Pro Retina 15 MID 2015 on all flights. The agency issued a statement citing a recall by Apple as a result of battery problems which could cause overheating and consequently fire. Some weeks ago, Apple announced a recall of 15-inch MacBook Pro units sold between September 2015 and February 2017 due to battery problems.

The African Business Angel Network and VC4A have announced the 12 startups that will pitch at the Africa Early Stage Investor Summit in Cape Town in November. The startups include FinChatBot, FlexClub, Mobiz and Snapsave from South Africa; 7keema, Brimore, Buseet and VRapeutic from Egypt; CredPal, CrowdForce, and LifeBank from Nigeria as well as Algerian transportation service Yassir.

Fintech company, Cellulant has relaunched its consumer-facing payment app as Tingg. The app will provide a wide range of financial services making it a super-app of some sorts. The app was originally launched as Mula four years ago. Tingg will be available in 8 African countries and will connect consumers and businesses to over 120 banks, 40 mobile network operators in one inclusive network.

Facebook and CcHub have announced the second cohort of the FbStart Accelerator. The cohort comprises 12 teams from Nigeria and Ghana. The selected startup teams are Appruve, VNTS, Chekkit, Curacel, Simbi Interactives, Haulr, Vmedkit and Gradely while the selected student teams include InventOne, Mus-comm Spill-Sat, Gesal and VInsighte.

That’s All,
See you tomorrow,

– Olanrewaju

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