Payhippo, a Nigerian fintech that provides capital for SMEs, has appointed Dami Olawoye, its former CFO, as its new CEO. 

Payhippo, a fintech that uses artificial intelligence to lend credit to small businesses in Nigeria, has appointed Dami Olawoye, its former chief financial officer, as its new chief executive officer. Zach Bijesse, the former CEO, will transition to a role on the company’s board of directors.

Olawoye shared that during his tenure, the company will focus on small businesses in the renewable energy sector and help them “scale up and create jobs” with the company’s new products. “I am deeply honoured to become CEO of Payhippo,” said Olawoye. “Payhippo is a leading player in Nigeria’s fintech sector, and I am excited to lead the company’s growth and continued support for small businesses across the country.”

Payhippo will also expand its product offerings to include asset finance and inventory finance. In a statement shared with TechCabal, the company said it had identified a significant gap in the lower end of the solar equipment distribution chain and would use its experience in SME lending to fill this gap. 

In Nigeria, small businesses form the backbone of the economy. They contribute 48% to the national GDP and account for 96% of businesses and 84% of employment. Under Bijesse’s leadership, the company disbursed over 36,000 loans to small businesses and created an AI-driven credit engine. During his time as CFO, Olawoye launched a partnership platform and drove growth in the company’s profitability.

The outgoing CEO, Zach Bijesse, said, “I’ve always believed that Payhippo has the potential to be a force for good in Nigeria, helping small businesses grow and create jobs. I’m confident that Dami will continue to lead Payhippo forward on this mission, and I’m excited to see what the future holds for the company. As I transition from CEO to board member, I’m especially grateful to Chioma, Uche, and Dami for their contributions to Payhippo’s success. They are the ones who helped build this company from scratch, and I’m excited to continue watching it grow up.”

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