A new global fintech platform emerges
It always saddens me to see foreign-led companies raking millions on the continent. Africans need to wake up.
Great piece and an amazing opportunity, while helping to improve the lives of a lot of people, by giving them easy and cost-effective access to financial services.
What I am trying to understand is what is Wave's strategy. I see them entering several new markets, Uganda, Mali, Benin, Togo, Burkina Faso to add to their strong presence in Ivory Coast and Senegal. Is the plan to win big and double down in a few markets or to get a toe-hold across several markets and see how it works out?
And how do you think about the ultimate 'winner' in these markets, is it a winner takes mosts (if not all) kind of business (like Safaricom in Kenya), or do you see room for a few competitors.
Ultimately is Wave looking to be the go-to player in each of the markets they enter, or will they be happy with a meaningful but not overly dominant position in a few markets?
I talked to Ben a while back on my podcast, they're an awesome team solving a really important problem! https://narrativespodcast.com/2021/09/06/58-be-intentional-with-ben-kuhn/
One more comment. Initially there was a promising start-up in Uganda called Eversend. Their intention was to become something like the African version of Wise (formerly Transferwise) and/or Revolut. The founders of Eversend were friends with the people of Monito, a Swiss-based website which helps people to find the cheapest remittance providers by using the Monito search engine. Monito also does reviews and comparisons of neobanks/challenger banks/remittance providers etc. I think Eversend has been taken over by organized crime type people though but I'm sure their friends at Monito might know what the problem is. Eversend's recent Google Play reviews are horrible but if you read the details from Eversend's Google Play site you can get an idea of what they were trying to create. They might have been a worthy competitor of Wave's?
This post looks like an investment memo to me tbh. It really did makes a lot of sense. Thanks for sharing.
It surprised me that you didn't mention that mobile money worked for users very well in economies in Africa where nothing else worked, including cash. Both Zimbabwe and Somalia (probably both considered unanimously the worst economies in the world) were able to build their complete basket case economies on the reliability of mobile money in commerce. If Wave can match that reliability in Somalia and Zimbabwe then you might have a clear winner? But Africa and Africans won't benefit well unless Wave has a number of African competitors on the continent.
Interesting article... I enjoyed reading it and hope we can exchange ideas on this topic..... see https://somalia.substack.com/p/coming-soon?showWelcome=true