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Bhambani, Flutterwave CFO Resigns amidst $50m IPO Plans

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Oneal Bhambani, chief financial officer (CFO) at Flutterwave, has resigned, just over a year after joining the Africa’s leading payments company.

Bhambani, Flutterwave CFO Resigns amidst $50m IPO Plans

Bhambani, took to his LinkedIn to make the announcement public, saying “I wish everyone at Flutterwave the best and I will be rooting for you. Last week, I made the difficult decision to end my tenure at the company.”

His resignation is coming as the fintech company plans a $50 million investment in Kenya.

Bhambani joined Flutterwave after serving as CFO for American fintech Kabbage.

He was at Kabbage, a lending company, when it was acquired by American Express.

Post acquisition, he stayed on as an executive. He left American Express to join Flutterwave at a time when the company was facing fraud allegations in Kenya and battling court cases.

Flutterwave in Kenya has undergone what its Co-founder terms as ‘a baptism of fire”.

Alleged accusations of money laundering led the corruption watchdog, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), to shut down several of its bank accounts in the country.

The development saw the state freeze over USD 52 million of Flutterwave’s funds. However, the case was withdrawn and Flutterwave was granted access to its accounts on this occasion.

This year, a group of 2,468 Nigerian  Nationals obtained a court order to have 45 Flutterwave accounts in Kenya frozen alongside 10 Mobile Money Wallets.

The Nigerians claimed the pan African start-up was the vehicle used to defraud them of $12.04 million.

Bhambani’s time at the payments company was also marked by expansion into Rwanda as a licensed remittance company.

After making his resignation public, he has not announced his next move yet.

In the interim, Israel Koledowo, head of Finance for Africa, will serve as the Flutterwave’s CFO.

The company is set to begin a global search for a new CFO.

Meanwhile, despite, its troubles in Kenya, Flutterwave  plans a $50 million (Ksh7.3 billion) investment in Kenya.

Bhambani has quit as at crucial phase as the firm pushes for a payments and remittances licence in Kenya.

In September, Olugbenga Agboola, the company’s chief executive and co-founder confirmed that Flutterwave has received first-name approval from the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK).

“We are looking at investing not less than $50 million. We are employing people. We are getting a new office and scaling up our infrastructure. There is a lot to do in Kenya,” said Mr Agboola.

Optimistic on receiving a payments and remittance licence from the regulator, Flutterwave has been hiring more staff to prepare the ground.

The firm has snapped up top talent from other fintech’s like Chipper Cash and tech companies including Safaricom and Microsoft. It is building a team while planning to set up a physical premise in the country.

Securing approval in Kenya will expand Flutterwave’s presence into additional African markets, including Egypt, South Africa, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Cameroon, where the company already offers payment infrastructure solutions for merchants and service providers.

Bhambani, who previously served in the same role at American Express and Kabbage, joined Flutterwave in June 2022—a few months after the company secured a $250 million Series D at a valuation of over $3 billion.

Announcing his appointment at the time, Olugbenga ‘GB’ Agboola, founder and CEO of Flutterwave, said: “His track record of operating finance to enable scale and innovation with listed company standard financial controls will help us accelerate our growth as we continue to meet the needs of our expanding global customer base.”

Given that his appointment occurred a few months after the company had been accused of financial misconduct, some analysts contended that Bhambani’s hiring was imperative.

They argued that since the scandal primarily centred on financial issues, an experienced CFO could have either prevented or more effectively controlled the problems.

Earlier this year, allegations of financial misconduct against Flutterwave in Kenya were dismissed. Subsequently, the fintech company has initiated a series of strategic hires to facilitate its expansion in the East African nation.

Moreover, it has unveiled intentions to invest $50 million in the country. In August, Flutterwave received name approval from the Central Bank of Kenya, a significant step towards obtaining its remittance and payment licenses.

In August, Flutterwave partnered with IndusInd, the sixth largest bank in India by assets, to expand its remittance product, Send App to the South Asian country. Before the expansion announcement, Agboola said that it was moving forward with plans for an initial public offering (IPO), which it first publicly indicated in 2022.

“The timing of the listing will be determined by many factors.

Currently, we’re dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s. Like any company in our position, we consider multiple strategic opportunities. I can’t share any details regarding listing venues,” Agboola said.

 

Flutterwave processes over 500,000 daily payments and operates across 34 African countries, accepting payments in more than 30 different currencies.

The platform offers a wide array of payment options, exceeding 15, and it receives over 20 million API calls each day.

Additionally, as of February 2022, Flutterwave’s e-commerce solution amassed a network of more than 30,000 merchants.

Their rapidly growing product, Flutterwave Send, which debuted in December 2021, processed 4,729 transactions amounting to $3.6 million in its first full month of operation.

This product attracted customers from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Nigeria.

By March 2021, Flutterwave had processed 140 million transactions totaling over $9 billion. By February 2022, the number of transactions processed had surged by more than 40%, reaching 200 million transactions, with the transaction value soaring by 78% to $16 billion.

During the same period, the number of businesses utilising Flutterwave’s diverse payment methods globally tripled, growing from 290,000 to 900,000, according to Contrary Research.

 

 

 

 

 


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E-Financial

Unity Bank Customers Win Over N4 Million in Cashtoken Rewards Promo

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Unity Bank customers have claimed over N4 million in cash rewards in its ongoing loyalty programme recently rolled out with Cashtoken, a Cash Reward-as-a-Service company.

The winners included no fewer than 40 customers who adopted and transacted on the Bank’s digital banking platforms, including the UniFi mobile banking application, the *7799# USSD platform or activated their Unity Bank Verve Card to transact on e-payment terminals across Nigeria.

Beginning from onboarding in our customer lifecycle journey, the Unity Bank Cashtoken Partnership commenced as a loyalty and reward scheme to reinforce the benefits of e-banking platforms.

To begin, Customer transactions earn cash tokens, which are then redeemed to qualify for the monthly Cashtoken Rewards draw. Consequently, winners emerge from the draws to claim the cash prizes.

Recall that the retail lender announced the ongoing Cashtoken Rewards loyalty programme in December 2023 in partnership with Cashtoken Rewards Africa to empower customers and improve customer satisfaction.

The partnership with Cashtoken Rewards also provided an opportunity for the Bank to migrate customers—old and new—to a platform that will continually create exciting rewards and appreciation for loyalty.

Eghomware Iyamu, Unity Bank’s Head of E-Business, commenting on the success of the Cashtoken Rewards loyalty program, stated: “We are excited to see our customers win over N4 million in cash rewards through our partnership with Cashtoken.

“This initiative demonstrates our commitment to recognizing and rewarding the loyalty of our customers”.

“By leveraging our digital banking platforms, including the Unifi mobile banking application and the *7799# USSD platform, we are not only enhancing customer experience but also providing life-changing opportunities.

“The Cashtoken Rewards program is a testament to our dedication to improving customer satisfaction and creating meaningful rewards along our customer lifecycle journey.

“We look forward to seeing more of our customers benefit from this exciting program as we continue to innovate and deliver exceptional value to them.”

Unity Bank has robust electronic banking products which include mobile and digital banking channels, including ATM, PoS, or any digital payment channels which support retail product transactions across the country. New-to-Bank customers are invited to open a Unity Bank account, onboard onto the digital platforms and begin transacting on the various platforms to earn cash token rewards and cash prizes while existing customers are encouraged to onboard and transact to win even more rewards and cash prizes.


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E-Financial

FXTM Academy Concludes Successful Event in PHC, Hosts Next Event in Lagos

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FXTM, a global online trading company is hosting an exclusive training for traders where participants can discover the strategies used by the world’s top traders to gain mastery of the market.

L-R: Oluwafumbi Ogedengbe, Specialist Client Education, FXTM Nigeria; Adaeze Uzochukwu, Education Coordinator, FXTM Nigeria; Mathew Anthony, Manager, Market Analysis, FXTM Nigeria; Destiny Ikeakanam, Education Coordinator, FXTM Nigeria and Pius Ogbu, Specialist, Client Education, FXTM Nigeria.

FXTM Academy is dedicated to helping traders and trainees achieve exceptional results in the global markets.

According to Mathew Anthony, Educator at FXTM Academy “We are a global online trading platform that offers stocks, commodities, and other financial instruments, providing traders with access to various markets, competitive pricing, and advanced trading tools.

“Our goal is to empower traders to Learn, Trade and Earn from the global markets.”

This Academy will provide free tutorials through webinars, workshops, video presentations, online courses, market analysis, insights, professional mentorship, and support.

“By offering education and training, FXTM Academy aims to help traders improve their trading skills, make informed trade decisions, and achieve their financial goals.”

Abiola Akinyele, Executive Director of FXTM Nigeria said the registration of the training has opened on the FXTM website and event will take place on the 17th of August.

He said it will be quite exciting and will provide great opportunities for participants to grow the skills to unprecedented heights and to join the ranks of the elite.


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E-Financial

Nova Bank Will Make Great Impact – Oduoza

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Phillips Oduoza, chairman of Nova Bank Plc, has said that the new commercial bank is poised to create jobs and make a great impact.

Nova Bank Will Make Great Impact – Oduoza

Oduoza who spoke at the launching of Nova Bank’s first branch as a national commercial bank in Lagos, said that the bank’s foray into commercial banking and upgrade to National Banking Licence were part of a long-term goal to make an impact.

He said, “We are not here just to maximise profit, but we are here as Nova to have the greatest impact in the society. And this is one of the reasons why we decided to extend to commercial banking business.

“We have been very, very successful, as testified by our customers in the wholesale banking space. And we felt it is just necessary to extend the service to the retail end of the market, which is where you will have the largest population of banking customers.

“Therefore, we want to transfer that success story to the retail end of the market. We want to impact the Nigerian economy as a whole. We want to assist in job creation, stability of the country, which Mr President has been working on. So, by going commercial, it gives us a platform for more job creation in the country.”

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who performed the ribbon cutting for the inauguration of the first branch, commended the board and management of Nova Bank for taking the decision to invest more into commercial banking not minding the various challenges and uncertainties in the economy.

He said, “We need to encourage them; we need to stay in touch with them because they have a choice.

“They could as well have remained as a nimble wholesale bank or as a merchant bank as a matter. But they felt they need to take it further, and this means they need to dip their hands into their pockets and bring additional resources that would make it possible for them to be able to compete on a larger scale.”

 

 


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