Two Nigerian Startups have emerged the winner of the Merchant Payments and Financial Inclusion Challenges Sub Saharan Africa (SSA) Everywhere Initiative, a global program aimed at startups and designed to encourage the development of the next big thing in payment.

The solution of these Nigeria startups beat 10 other contenders selected from 238 submissions to emerge as the winner.

The competition structure was broken down into three

  1. Merfirst-everents Challenge: How to enable smaller merchants to accept payments in-store digitally OR Provide a safe and secure solution for online merchants to drive eCommerce and reduce cash on delivery?
  2. Social Business Payments Challenge: How can startups use Visa’s APIs to leverage the mass reach and social media partner platforms like Facebook to help businesses operating in fast-paced consumer centric environments improve cash flow and receive payments?
  3. Financial Inclusion Challenge: How can startups leverage technology to provide services that are functional for illiterate customers to provide them with secure transaction experiences that build and enhance their confidence in the banking system?

A Nigerian Startups also participated and won in some of the categories. Zowasel, a Nigerian Startup developed a solution which connects under-financed smallholder farmers with investors vie mobile phone-based P2P lending and marketplace sales as well as gives them access to best agricultural practices, they won in the “Financial Inclusion” challenge.

Visa’s Everywhere Initiative is a worldwide program to support the company’s goal of fostering the growth of next-generation payment technologies. This is the maiden edition in sub-Sahara Africa with shortlist of fintechs from Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia and other countries.

A total of 2,100 fintech startups from across North America, Latin America, Europe, and Asia have participated.

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