Beyond the Mobile Wallet: Mapping the fintech ecosystem in Africa

Published 6 November 2019
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In March 2017 the Kenyan mobile money transfer platform M-Pesa celebrated its 10th birthday. The growth in access to mobile money has been reflected in the access to financial services generally, with a greater number of households across Africa having access to formal banking services.

There are a greater number of financial technology start-ups offering a wider diversity of solutions to consumers. We take a holistic view of the financial technology market in Africa to understand how it is developing.

FinTech activity is focused on three countries

67% of all FinTech companies we reviewed are located in South Africa (33%), Nigeria (19%) and Kenya (14%). The next most active FinTech ecosystems in sub- Saharan Africa are Uganda, Ghana, Rwanda and Cameroon.

Different levels of market maturity across the continent

Start-ups in Nigeria and South Africa tended to focus on the facilitation of payments and digital infrastructure, while in Kenya there is a much greater focus on lending services.

More sophisticated services beginning to take hold

B2B digital payment processing platforms which use API’s to process transactions from eCommerce marketplaces are beginning to grow in number, as are the number of services leveraging cryptocurrency and blockchain to reduce the cost of cross-border remittance transactions.

This report was first published in April 2019.