Patricia has said it doesn’t have physical offices in Nigeria. The company also confirmed that it offered customers the option to convert their deposits to shares.
Nigeria-focused crypto platform, Patricia has reacted to a video of its purported office making rounds on social media. The video, made by a frustrated customer, showed an empty workspace believed to be Patricia’s office, insinuating that the company had absconded with customers’ funds. In May, TechCabal reported that Patricia lost $2 million to a hack.
While it has held town hall meetings and shared several plans around repaying customers, it has been met with skepticism. At its last town hall, it clarified a plan to convert user assets to Patricia tokens. With customers losing patience, the video that was posted on Instagram suggested that a customer had hoped to get answers from Patricia’s physical office.
But in an email response to TechCabal, Hanu Fejiro, the company’s CEO, said it runs a fully remote structure. “The office in the video is an innovation hub set up (we announced in 2022), to offer free working spaces to Devs and Crypto enthusiasts, Patricia does not actively operate from that office,” he said.
According to Fejiro, the company moved its headquarters to Villanius, Lithuania after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) banned financial institutions from trading cryptocurrencies in 2021. “Our business model allows us and we have invested in infrastructure to run a fully remote model with team members spread across continents. As it stands, we do not have a registered office in Nigeria.”
Fejiro also confirmed reports from earlier in the week that the company is asking users to convert their debt tokens to shares in the company. He said the move “forms an integral component of our strategy for fundraising and reorganizing our debts.” TechCabal had reported that the Lithuania-based company is raising new funds in its latest move to repay customers.
Fejiro disclosed in the email that the company is “affording our users the opportunity to transform their debt tokens into convertible notes at a favorable discount in Patricia.” He claimed that numerous users have previously approached the company with the proposal and now Patricia is embracing it. “Please note that these shares will be managed by a SEC license trusted third-party, ensuring complete transparency,” he added.
Patricia’s decision to convert the rest of its customers’ assets into a debt management token—the Patricia token—was met with mixed reactions from customers. The company is hoping that it can successfully use the debt management tokens to repay its customers, but its repayment plan is tied to the company’s profitability. But Patricia will have hard time convincing frustrated customers who want access to their money. Since April, customers have been unable to withdraw funds from the Patricia Plus app which triggered a bank run.
Speaking at a virtual town hall meeting with customers on September 29, Patricia’s CEO disclosed that the Patricia Plus app—which will be relaunched soon—is currently under beta testing. Fejiro said in the email that customers have been notified of the plan to redeem their balances in batches as soon as the new app is launched.