Paga, a Nigeria-based mobile payment company, has partnered with investment firm, Untapped Global, to provide financing of point-of-sale (POS) devices for small businesses and merchants in the country.
Paga’s POS devices enable merchants to accept cards, mobile payments, and other forms of digital payments, making it easy for them to get paid while enabling them to provide other value-added financial services to customers.
The financing, provided via Untapped Global, is structured to lower the overall cost of entry for merchants to acquire handheld POS terminals, with payments recovered from the revenues earned on the devices.
After a successful pilot programme, which saw 2,000 merchants provided with financed POS devices earlier this year, both companies have, according to Paga founder and Group CEO Tayo Oviosu, decided to scale their partnership.
“We are excited to scale our POS rollout programme with Untapped,” says Oviosu. “We have built the best on-ramps and off-ramps for cash in Nigeria through the Paga agent network and are further digitising merchants via our new merchant platform, Doroki.”
Over the past year, the Covid-19 pandemic has increased the rate at which digital-first companies – such as Paga in Nigeria and South Africa’s Yoco – are normalising the use of technology in payments and money transfers in the informal economy across Africa.
However, the purchase and onboarding cost of POS devices is unaffordable for most merchants. Hence, lowering the cost of entry for using mobile payments is key to delivering the benefits of this growing fintech revolution to small businesses.
The Paga Group currently has over 33,000 merchants across its ecosystem and through the collaboration with Untapped, the company expects to reach 120,000 merchants in the next two years.
San Francisco-based Untapped Global provides capital to asset-based businesses like Paga via its Smart Asset Financing model, which leverages technology to track assets and capture revenue in real-time.
“Our goal at Paga Group is to make it simple for 1 billion people to pay, get paid and access financial services,” Oviosu says. “The team at Untapped is aligned with that goal, and the current partnership showcases its objective to ensure that entrepreneurs have the opportunity to scale to their full potential.”
Untapped focuses on Africa and other emerging markets, with teams in East Africa, West Africa, the Caribbean, and Europe.
“We’re excited to use Smart Asset Financing to greatly increase access to financial services across Nigeria, with partners that know the space best, like Paga,” founder and CEO, Jim Chu, says.
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