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Report Finds Finance App Installs Grow Across Africa

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AppsFlyer and Google have launched a new report looking at how mobile apps are transforming finance in Africa. Data reveals a significant increase in finance app installs across the African continent, as people turn to apps and technology as a way of managing finances, navigating economic uncertainty, and moving towards financial freedom.

The report analyzed more than 140 million installs, across 3,000 finance apps, and found that installs across the continent grew 25%.

Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya & South Africa were the main contributors to this rise in finance app installs, with the former largely bolstering this by a massive 200%; followed by Nigeria, which saw an increase by 33%. Kenya’s growth was recorded at 5%, while South Africa witnessed a decline by 11%.

Financial Google search increase in Africa

Google search trends between May 2021 & May 2022 showed that lending and currency conversions dominated in terms of interest related to finance – an indication of exactly how uncertain the economic situation has become for most people on the continent, particularly post-pandemic.

Key countries contributing to this increase include South Africa, who led the way in “grant status” and “loan application searches”, recording 700% & 51% increases in search intent, respectively.

“They also led the way in “payment date” searches, with a 700% increase in search intent. There was also a large increase in South Africans searching for “currency conversions”, with a 74% increase in search intent for “euros to rands conversion rates”.

Nigeria topped the list in terms of “loan app” searches, with an increase in search intent of 68% in the country. In Kenya, the majority of people searched for “currency conversion”, with a 52% increase in search intent for “USD to KSH” searches.

How Marketers are responding

According to the report, app install ad spend for finance represented approximately 87% of total spend across the continent between January 2021 and September 2022, confirming exactly how dominant the finance industry is.

This figure represents the amount of money invested in advertising campaigns aimed at driving users to app stores to download an app.

Indeed, there was a 45% increase in finance app install ad spend across Africa on Android devices between H1 2021 & H2 2022.

Marketers have been forced to up their budgets in order to run marketing campaigns to acquire new customers, as well as re-engage dormant users. As a result of this, installs from remarketing campaigns tailored to re-engage customers surged 55% between H1 2021 and H1 2022.

Commenting on findings gathered from the report, Otávio Tranchesi, Industry Lead Finance, AppsFlyer stated, “Once again, we are thrilled to collaborate with Google, exploring one of the most exciting industries across the continent.

The tech sector in Africa has experienced tremendous growth over the last few years, but one industry that stands out is the financial sector – and with smartphone penetration increasing, mobile is crucial for success. We’re proud to be working alongside so many companies spearheading this growth.”

Lizzie Kondowe, Africa Apps Lead, Google added “When we look at Google’s search trends, it’s clear that financial uncertainty is weighing heavily on many people across the continent.

“We’re seeing more and more apps come to market that aim to solve these problems, and so it’s no surprise to see installs rising. We’re proud to be working alongside AppsFlyer, to bring marketers the insights and tools they need to grow their apps.”


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PalmPay Named Among Top 250 Fintech Companies in the World by CNBC and Statista

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Africa-focused fintech platform, PalmPay, has been included in the 2024 edition of CNBC and Statista’s prestigious list of the “Top 250 Fintech Companies in the World.” This recognition underscores PalmPay’s rapid growth and significant contributions to advancing financial inclusion.

The CNBC/Statista list honours fintech pioneers significantly transforming the financial services industry through technology. More than 2000 companies were evaluated globally based on general and sector-specific KPIs to determine the final selection.

In 2024, some of the most influential fintechs in the world were included in the list, including Alipay, Nubank, Monzo, and Revolut. Six other African firms made the list: Flutterwave (Nigeria/US) – Payments; Kuda (Nigeria/UK) – Neobanking; MTN (South Africa) – Payments; Piggyvest (Nigeria) – Financial planning; and Yoco (South Africa) – Payments.

PalmPay has developed an integrated platform that caters to consumers and businesses in the African market. The startup, which has been operating since 2019, pioneered a unique model in Nigeria that provides financial services such as money transfers, bill payment, credit services and savings via a one-stop-shop fintech ‘superapp’ and mobile money agents.

This dual approach of easy-to-use digital banking, combined with offline touchpoints for those without smartphones, has contributed to driving financial inclusion in a market where more than 40% of adults remain unbanked.

In 2023, PalmPay announced a major milestone of reaching 30 million registered users on its smartphone apps and 1.1 million businesses in its network of mobile money agents and retail merchants. A third of PalmPay customers report that the platform was their first-ever financial account.

PalmPay has quickly grown to become a market leader in Nigeria thanks to its user-friendly interface, reliable transactions, and focus on driving market share through fee-free transfers and promotions. PalmPay processes 15 million transactions on its consumer app daily and maintains a 99.5% transaction success rate.

To achieve this scale in a market where 10% transaction failure rates were common, the company built out its payment infrastructure, channel integrations and transaction routing systems. In addition to its consumer wallet, PalmPay offers services to businesses that leverage the PalmPay platform via its suite of POS machines, APIs and checkout solutions.

“It’s an honour for PalmPay to be recognised by CNBC and Statista as one of the World’s Top Fintech Companies,” said Sofia Zab, Global CMO, “This recognition validates our unique approach to financial services and our commitment to driving financial inclusion. We are actively expanding PalmPay’s reach and offerings, ensuring more people have access to essential financial services and promoting economic development in emerging markets”

PalmPay operates in several key markets across Africa, including Nigeria, Ghana and Tanzania, with plans to expand further in the region and other emerging markets. The company has global HQs in China and London.


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WiDEF Launches Round of Technical Assistance to help Close the Gender Digital Divide

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The Women in the Digital Economy Fund (WiDEF) announced today the launch of its second competitive round, this time inviting applications from large private sector enterprises seeking technical support to scale proven solutions to significantly close the gender digital divide.

Announced by the White House in March 2023, WiDEF is a joint effort between USAID and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to accelerate progress on closing the gender digital divide, managed by CARE, Global Digital Inclusion Partnership and the GSMA Foundation.

This round of support takes the form of tailored technical assistance to scale products, services or approaches that can significantly increase women’s access to and usage of the internet. It follows WiDEF’s     first round of funding and support that closed on May 6th 2024 for local organisations.

The technical assistance on offer aims to help to unlock opportunities to significantly close the gender digital divide, rather than supporting an enterprise’s ongoing “business as usual” activities. Examples of the kind of technical support private sector enterprises might apply for might include:

–  Research into the principal barriers and needs of underserved segments of women to inform actions to better support them to access and use digital technology and the internet

–  Evaluation of existing products and services for women to inform their evolution and wider usage

–   Testing specific approaches and services to ensure they best meet the needs of underserved women

–  Product adaptation and iteration, including the analysis of service usage data, user feedback and further design research

Business modelling and support for scaling products and services

“From our experience, we have seen how the right technical assistance can truly help companies unlock impact at scale.

“Through this new round, we believe we can deepen the private sector’s contribution to the closing of the gender divide across low- and middle-income countries, in line with the GSMA Foundation’s unwavering commitment to addressing this challenge,” said Max Cuvellier Giacomelli, Head of Mobile for Development, GSMA.

WiDEF will provide successful applicants in countries where USAID operates with tailored technical assistance for up to two years valued in the range of $50,000 to $150,000 USD. This support will be provided by the WiDEF Consortium and third-party suppliers engaged by WiDEF.

WiDEF aims to support commercially sustainable, scalable and evidence-based solutions to help close the gender digital divide. Successful applicants will need to articulate how their solution – and the technical assistance they draw on – will address at least two of the following core priority areas for WiDEF:

Improved access to affordable devices and online experiences

Increased availability of relevant products and tools

Elevation of digital literacy and skills

Enhancement of safety and security

Additionally, all applications will need to generate insights and data that expand the collection and use of gender-disaggregated research and analysis.

Full eligibility criteria and the application process can be found here. Applications are due by September 12, 2024.

 


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Reps to Donate 50% of Salaries to Fight Hunger

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House of Representatives at a plenary session on Thursday pledged to give up 50 per cent of their salaries for six months to address the hunger across the country.

During the session presided over by Speaker Tajudeen Abbas, Deputy Speaker Benjamin Kalu amended the motion, urging his colleagues to sacrifice 50% of their salaries. He made this plea when it was his turn to speak, seeking their support for this gesture.

“This government is doing its best but one year is not enough to address the challenges of this country. I want to plead with our colleagues to sacrifice 50 per cent for a period of six months.

“Our salary is N600,000 a month. I want to plead that we let go of 50 per cent of our salary for a period of six months,” Kalu said.

With each member paying N300,000 into a common purse, the legislative chamber will be contributing N108m monthly to the Federal Government and N648m for six months.


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