africa Banking Financial Inclusion Fintech

Emerald invests in app to advance financial inclusion in Africa

Emerald Group announced its strategic investment in a revolutionary mobile-based financial services provider, Makeba. The move comes in a proactive response to the growing demand for innovative, accessible financial services, particularly for the population operating mainly within the informal sector of African economies.

In the combat against financial inequality, Makeba is an all-inclusive application that enables individuals to use their mobile wallets to perform multiple financial transactions domestically and internationally. Founded in the USA and led by an experienced Africa-centric team, Makeba is uniquely placed in transforming the formal remittance markets and merchant point of sale operations, whilst also advancing financial inclusion.

Makeba’s mission is to create a low cost, user-friend financial platform for the financial and social benefit of individuals and businesses alike. The platform which will host a suite of mobile applications, will feature various financial services such as remittance, peer-to-peer transactions and the introduction of a digitalised payment network, to provide users with an efficient, streamline and secure transaction experience from their smartphones. Amongst other benefits is a tool-set of merchant services including a point of sale system with inventory tracking, and other useful business resources that can be easily integrated into existing infrastructures, without the requirement of additional hardware. As a result, all Makeba users profit from significantly lower transactions costs and more accessible services to meet their daily needs.

Makeba’s comprehensive approach stems from the need to counter three prevalent issues, that is: the high average cost of remittance, a lack of accessible financial services within the informal sector in emerging markets, and the high average credit card fees burdening merchants. While international money transfers are critical to the livelihoods of many, an addressable pool of 226 million smartphones in Africa alone mean that Africa spearheads the adoption of mobile wallets due to a lack of banking infrastructure in remote regions. This in turn paves the way for a faster adoption of Makeba’s concept, which integrates various financial services in one app, along with an optimised user experience and culturally affined customer focus. Although there is a global necessity for the application, Makeba will initially target the African diaspora within USA and Europe, and the informal sector of the African economy.

Source: Emerald Group Press Release

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