Kenya scooped the top price in the Visa Everywhere competition. Visa everywhere is an initiative that tasks startups to solve payments and commerce challenges of tomorrow. Through this program, VISA helps the startups to enhance their own product propositions and at the same time provide solutions for Visa’s network of partners.
The program which was started in 2015 is currently in its 3rd year and has expanded to be a global event. So far, over 2,100 participating startups that have raised over USD. 2 Billion In funding. The program is active in 6 regions including, North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
Kenya has been on the forefront when it comes to creation of fintech systems. Do not take my words for it. Watch this; countries are coming to benchmark in Kenya on mobile banking and fintech.
Visa everywhere encourages the development of advanced payments methods and systems using VISA. The program is structured around three real-life business challenges which include;
Solutions that competitors should provide
- Social Business Payments Challenge: How can startups use Visa’s APIs to facilitate sales on social media platforms like Facebook to help businesses operating in fast-paced consumer-centric environments improve cash flow and receive payments?
- Financial Inclusion Challenge: How can startups leverage technology to provide services that are functional for illiterate customers? Can they develop a service that provides them with secure transactions that build and enhance their confidence on the banking system?
- Merchant Payments Challenge: How to enable smaller merchants to accept payments in-store digitally or provide a safe and secure solution for online merchants to drive e-commerce and reduce cash on delivery?
After the Visa everywhere competition that was finalized yesterday, Kenya’s Mookh Africa emerged as the top prize winner in the first ever Sub Saharan Africa (SSA) Visa Everywhere Initiative. Mookh beat 11 other finalists, who included 3 Kenyan startups including M-Changa, WayaWaya, and LipaPlus.
Mookh Africa provides a social business payments solution which facilitates the buying and selling of products on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Once the seller creates an online store on Mookh, they can embed it into their Facebook page.
The Kenyan startup won both the “Social Business Payments” challenge as well as the overall prize for its idea. The company took home US$50,000 and the opportunity to work with Visa to develop the concept further.
Nigerian startup, CredPal, won the “Merchant Payments” challenge and US$25,000 for its solution that allows business and individuals to pay for purchases in installments across online and offline merchants.
Zowasel, another Nigerian startup, developed a solution which connects under-financed smallholder farmers with investors.
The startup uses mobile phone-based P2P lending and marketplace sales. The startup also gives them access to best agricultural practices. They won in the “Financial Inclusion” challenge. We can’t be prouder than that. Can we?