Azimo, a digital money transfer service based in London and Krakow, is set to join Theresa May’s official delegation to Africa – her first official visit to the continent. Azimo is one of 29 companies selected, and the only Fintech, for the visit to Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. The trip takes place later this week and is seeking to boost economic ties between the two regions. This is the first time a British Prime Minister has travelled to Africa since 2013 – it has been 30 years since a PM visited Kenya.
Commenting on the Africa trip, the PM stated;
“As we prepare to leave the European Union, now is the time for the UK to deepen and strengthen its global partnerships. This week I am looking forward to discussing how we can do that alongside Africa to help deliver important investment and jobs as well as continue to work together to maintain stability and security.”
The news comes following Azimo’s announced of a $20 million investment led by Rakuten Capital. The funds will be used to increase their global presence. Azimo currently transfers money via their app and web service to 190+ countries.
Azimo can reach more than 5 billion potential customers via a wide variety of payout methods, including cash, bank deposits and mobile wallets. Many of the recipients of the company’s remittance payments are in Africa.
“We are the only established Fintech player to be joining the Prime Minister on this trade delegation to Africa – a testimony to how quickly we have established ourselves as a Fintech leader in the global money transfer sector,” commented Michael Kent, CEO, Azimo. “UK Fintech generates billions of pounds to the economy and we are leading the world in financial innovation. It’s important we showcase the valuable contribution of this sector.”
Azimo cites data from KPMG that indicates the UK topped the US on Fintech investment for the first half of 2018. The UK has been the clear leader in Fintech development in Europe for many years. The country has earned a reputation of punching above its weight class when it comes to innovation in financial services. Azimo says it is one of the fastest growing Fintechs in Europe. A
Kent says that Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa have been leading lights in Fintech innovation. With the collective population and economic potential, there are significant opportunities for UK Fintechs.
“This includes collaborating with regional partners to provide excellent services to consumers that have been historically under-served, and to build a better and more inclusive future for financial services,” added Michael Kent.