Kora helps global businesses go local and local businesses go global
Fintech is probably the most popular buzzword in the startup space at the moment. Transactions happen daily all over the world; a simpler process would definitely gain global attention. Multiple use cases continue to increase, driving financial inclusion globally and helping businesses scale.
Kora, a financial services marketplace, is a leading fintech that enables local and global businesses to operate and scale seamlessly with their payment solutions.
As a build-up to the exciting conversations that will take place at The Fintech Summit on Saturday 26 November 2022, we caught up with Kora’s Head of Marketing to discuss what Kora does for businesses and his expectations for the summit.
Let’s meet you – A short introduction and what you do at Kora.
My name is Gbenga Onalaja and I am the Marketing Manager at Kora. I work with a team of incredibly smart specialists to bring the Kora brand to life in a real way.
Can you discuss more about Kora and your offerings?
We are transitioning from the name Korapay to simply Kora. We are not a mobile app; rather, we are a payment infrastructure, and what this infrastructure does is let people do some exciting things.
For example, GIG Logistics uses our infrastructure to allow users to fund their wallet on their platform. They then use that to pay for the various packages they want delivered across Africa.
A platform like Myxalary uses Kora to make bulk payments to different company employees registered on their platform. So, the name, Korapay was limiting, but with the name Kora, we can fully embody that we are an infrastructure. Whatever you want to build that has to do with payments, Kora can do it for you; from payments to payments to settlements, Kora handles all of this.
We are a business that enables global businesses to go local and local businesses to go global, and we do this through our API offerings. With a single API, you can turn different aspects of the Kora bouquet of products on and off.
For global brands – many of which use Kora for payments (local procurement) – they get the opportunity to use local cards and capture more value because more people who only have local cards can now use their platform. dLocal and Payfuture are part of our global sellers.
Kora also allows local businesses to go global by enabling businesses that are based in, say, a place like Nigeria to go to a place like Ghana by enabling payments to them in that currency. So even if you are a local Nigerian business, you can turn on payments in Ghana Cedis using Kora’s API. This makes it possible to be a global business because there is now a gateway to accept payments in multiple currencies.
What excites you about The Fintech Summit?
Conferences like this are great for getting a feel for what people are building. I am interested in the session where Professor Olayinka David-West, Associate Professor at Lagos Business School will be speaking. She has preached about financial inclusion for a long time. Although there has been a lot of fintech in the last couple of years, financial inclusion has only increased marginally. It will be interesting to see how she talks about how financial inclusion has developed over the years.
When it comes to financial inclusion, I feel that every step counts; the more innovation we have in that area, even though they may not address the challenge very specifically, the greater the chance of having a product that will bring people who are not in the regulated financial space into it.
Another interesting session I am looking forward to is the embedded finance panel session, where our founder, Dickson Nsofor, will be speaking. This is interesting to us because it is one of the things that Kora allows. Kora can power businesses for embedded finance by allowing businesses to connect to their API.
What pain points do you think need to be addressed in Africa’s fintech sector?
A big one right now is regulation. Businesses like ours deal with people’s money, so regulation is par for the course, and it’s welcome. But it is important to ensure that the regulations do not affect the day-to-day operations of businesses. One of the things Nigeria is getting right is the new startup law; it is a strong step in the right direction. What this signals is that Nigeria is taking startups seriously.
So when we mention challenges like this, the government can take them seriously by helping startups to smooth the regulatory process.
What effect will you expect from conversations that will be held at the Fintech Summit?
It’s going to be different strokes for different folks. In a much broader sense, when it comes to construction, there are conferences like this that also help, to see gaps that have not yet been noticed. There is something that can come off the back of this summit; awareness of new gaps that fintechs can help fill. Sometimes this can come up by having a casual conversation with someone in the hall. Just the thought of ideas colliding will give rise to some new ideas.
Kora is a proud sponsor of The Fintech Summit and they will be exhibiting at the Summit on Saturday 26th November 2022 at the Four Points by Sheraton, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The Fintech Summit is three days away. Head over to fintech.techpoint.africa to reserve your spot as tickets are limited.