Fintech platform, OPay (Opera Pay), has announced it now has over 20,000 agents in Nigeria. The news signals that the mobile money company could be in a fantastic growth phase. It reached the new milestone just a month after it crossed 10,000 agents.
Yippee!!! We are excited to tell you we reached 20 Thousand Agents today! We're incredibly thankful to every agent who has chosen us as their preferred Mobile Money Platform. 💃#OPay #MobileMoney #AgentBanking pic.twitter.com/kGznt4VrsJ— OPay (@OPay_NG) May 16, 2019
OPay Mobile Money is perhaps the latest fintech solution thriving in the Nigerian ecosystem. The platform allows users transfer money, pay electricity bills and buy airtime easily. This sounds pretty much like every other payment solution in the market.
However OPay has one key distinguishing feature. It allows users operate OPay accounts like regular bank accounts. With just their phone numbers, users can send and receive money from any bank in Nigeria.
The startup also has plans to provide users with ATM cards, allowing them make transactions via platforms like the web and POS.
These are huge features, transforming the payment company into a formidable digital bank. Developing a sophisticated digital banking solution has been a key desire of many Nigerian banks and fintech startups. But only few have come close. Wema Bank’s Alat and the rebranded Paylater (now Carbon) are the two closest things to formidable banking solution in Nigeria.
But OPay Mobile Money is not far behind.
Owned by world famous browser maker, Opera Softwares, the fintech emerged on the scene in 2018. The platform originally operated in Nigeria as PayCom, and was owned by Telnet Nigeria. However, following a CBN draft which proposed to increase the financial requirements of fintech companies, PayCom was on the verge of collapse.
But in May 2018, Opera Softwares acquired PayCom and rebranded it as OPay, the same name as the mobile money solution it unveiled in Kenya.
The platform is Opera’s flagship fintech solution. In 2017, Opera unveiled plans to improve financial inclusion and the digital economy of Africa. It announced $100 million funding in order to achieve this by 2020. Opera has dedicated $40 million of this sum just for the Nigerian market alone.
9 months ago, like many businesses today, we brought to reality what we dreamt about. That dream was seamless payment of bills, subscription services; transfer & withdrawal of funds. 9 months on, are we fulfilling our dream? We asked our agent Mutiu. #OPayNigeria pic.twitter.com/RIubrnXBEm— OPay (@OPay_NG) May 9, 2019
That’s a huge commitment within such a short period of time. But it helps explain the quick growth in the number of its agents in Nigeria.
Agents of the company serve as secondary access point for users to explore its services. With their physical presence, the agents provide users with POS and other services for their convenience. The move is also a good marketing strategy.
For one thing the company is encouraging people who already have physical shops and businesses to sign-up as agents. As such, the commissions they earn is supplementary to their current incomes. Yet it allows the fintech startup to have its marketing materials present in even the most remote locations.
With serious cash at hand, OPay Mobile Money could become one of the fastest growing fintech solutions in Nigeria soon.