Nester Verify is an app where agents are connected to clients seeking to verify addresses. Like with the ride-hailing apps, they can decline or accept the services based on their convenience and with little hassle. The agents are paid a percentage of the money their clients pay and Nester takes the rest. Except these agents don’t need a car, and they don’t need to travel to the end of the world for a job. All they need to do is know their neighbourhood and earn money.
What is Nester Verify?
Nana Annah, the founder of the company said in an interview with Technext that they, at the now two-year-old address verification startup, are all about “value.” After a decade in the logistics business, she saw a vacuum in the space.With the rise of fintech and other financial institutions popping up all over the country, more addresses are needed to be verified, and verified quickly. But they also needed assurance that the addresses were in fact verified.
So, Nana launched Nester Verify, an app where entities seeking to verify addresses can log on to and post the address for agents. In less than 24 hours, Nester Verify agents do the verification and clients’ accounts are activated. Annah had no background in tech before the ideation of Nester Verify.
I went to a tech hub…I got developers to work on my product…and that’s how I got into tech…I wanted to solve a problem, so, I built a product that could give me that.
She quickly automated the process of the verification to provide “visibility and transparency.” The Nester app uses google maps to ensure that users are in the exact location of the property when they carry out verifications.
Still in beta mode and not yet rolled out to individual clients yet, Nester Verify saw over 10,000 agents within its first few months sign up and already boasts heavyweight players including Stanbic IBTC Bank. “We went first for the high kills,” she said.
How Nester Verify scaled up
Nester’s success has been very strategic. “At first, it was building a product, better than they had in the market, and then seeing the value it created, the banks now can easily open accounts with a faster turnaround time…Customers don’t have to wait a week. In 24 hours, we can carry out that verification.” Annah said about the rapid growth of the company.
The dominant contention about many companies from Uber to Moove with similar models is how the profits are being shared with agents. Agents revolt now and again about gross disparity in the profit-sharing percentage, calling out the companies for underpaying them. But Annah is ahead of it.
“I am very transparent with my agent…They have demanded more…and I have also asked for more…and they can see the increase every day,” she said.
She has also instated representatives in all the states, t0 help onboard new agents, to create a direct communication channel with her agents and listen to what their needs are. “Transparency is one of our key values,” she adds.
While many startups are quick to get funding to facilitate growth, Annah has taken the other route, joining the likes of Sydney Aigbogun, founder of CashBox to fund out of pocket and later raise money after a significant amount of growth.
“The fact that we can play in the same space, and I dare say, provide better services makes me know that money is usually not the answer. What the answer is, is being able to carry out the job and money follows,” she says.
Would Nester Verify raise funds?
Annah is very clear that money is important, For her, there are other things occupying higher positions on her scale of preference. Building a sustainable business is the first.
“It’s more about building a sustainable business…Money is good to grow and that’s where I think people are missing it today.”
With the rise of tech as an industry in Nigeria, the world has changed from what it used to be and Annah says she is a champion for that change. With Nester, she has created opportunities for young Nigerians to earn money without a certificate. Some agents, she says, earn as much as 50,000 per week.
“Back in the days, it has to be your qualification… Now we have agents who receive as much as ₦50,000 every Sunday.”
What’s the future for Nester and Nana Annah?
Nana Annah has only just started playing in the tech space, gradually building momentum. She said that she does not just want to build momentum and rise to the peak, but she wants to create value as she does it.
“Nana will keep looking for opportunities to create value,” she said.
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