I cant help obsessing over @fonbnk1 The FIRST
DeFi App that converts prepaid mobile airtime credits into money for mobile users in Africa and Latin America #unlockyourpotential Image
I learnt about @fonbnk1 from my time at the just ended Stellar DFS lab African blockchain bootcamp. I was paired up with @cduffus as his coach and mentor Image
Close to 8 billion registered prepaid airtime SIM cards w/ more adoption that mobile phones, smartphones, crypto wallets, mobile money wallets and bank accounts

Prepaid airtime SIM cards are more universal than any other technology and digital currency
Fonbnk turns every prepaid SIM card into a virtual debit card to enable anyone with prepaid airtime to participate in the global digital economy - payments, banking, DeFi, earning, savings, yield!

This video by Visa Crypto breaks is a great primer
Fonbnk resonated w/ me b/c of my experience with Airtime currency traders from research documented here

How Africa’s Airtime Currency Traders Birthed A Fintech Innovation Playbook kioneki.com/2018/09/10/how…
Fonbnk also resonated w/ me b/c of its peer to peer style global market place for trading mobile airtime (just like the popular p2p crypto marketplaces of Africa) both create earning opportunitiee

How Bitcoin is Solving One of Africa’s Biggest Problem kioneki.com/2020/05/11/how…
Fonbnk is also proof of how we can productize DeFi to address gaps in Africa’s mobile consumer market. Fonbnk is a backend DeFi engine running on a crypto blockchain but plugged w/ real world problems like earning opportunities for airtime resellers
Fonbnk is a manifestation of web3 in context of Africa
🏆🥇Fonbnk is a winner in my books
Fonbnk is a critical piece of the African metaverse/web3 stack depicted here Image
Now that this is public information, I imagine other blockchains interested in Africa and Latin America wld massively benefit from such bridges to the crypto realm from the real world - EOS, Ethereum, Stellar, Celo

Fonbnk is teaching us the gaps and playbook so take notes
The losers are legacy African Fintech companies b/c Apps like Fonbnkcan be NeoBanks and do everything legacy Fintech do. Its a pity, new startups built on DeFi rails are coming for your lunch.

Raise money now while you can, the tide has changed

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More from @pesa_africa

6 Oct
How much funding is going into African Crypto & Blockchain startups?

Looks like crazy volumes of VC capital is flowing into Crypto blockchain startups in the rest of the world apart from Africa...
My guess is financial services related use cases rank high on the list: payments, cross border, trading & speculation etc

Central Banking regulations is still the bottleneck b/c of formal fiat rails which caps possible products and impedes onboarding
Some options

1) old fintechs pivot into crypto products eg Chipper Cash, Stax, Eversend
2) new crypto/blockchain startups emerge w/ fresh rounds of funding
3) old African crypto startups raise more money for new products/expansion/scaling
4) African banks join crypto hype train
Read 7 tweets
5 Oct
“A recent NielsenIQ study revealed that nearly 7 in 10 consumers around the world have changed the way they buy categories and brands as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic.”
“A majority of consumers now find themselves with less money to spend and an abundance of caution around spending it. the study highlights that 73% of consumers have experienced a recent shift in their personal financial situations, to varying degrees, since September of 2020”
“consumer groups are reevaluating what’s essential to them and their families. They are making tough decisions about what categories can be abandoned and what compromises can be made even within a category.”
Read 5 tweets
21 Sep
European Football NFT Platform Sorare Raises $680M Series B

Sorare says it’s traded over $150 million worth of digital cards on its platform since January and currently has over 600,000 registered users coindesk.com/business/2021/…
Sharing this b/c Africa is a huge market for sport betting millions of users accessing bets via USSD, Smartphone App, Web App, SMS and Agent services

Betting companies are succesful post revenue technology startups b/t few will admit it
Mobile Money Top Payment Categories, Sport betting makes tye cut at top 4 in Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria
Read 11 tweets
20 Sep
Regulation by Central bankers in hot African fintech markets is a market variable you have to work with / around / find loopholes. It is not a constraint that VCs or entrepreneurs can "wish away"

Lets not be naive

True of crypto as well
Wizaj, VP at Chipper Cash, African Fintech w/ $150million+ funding in 3 years was quoted saying

"40% of Chipper cash staff count is legal and compliance people"
Part of the problem is

1. Naive entrepreneurs (20s w/ no real world business experience)
2. Foreigner VCs now remote who will idealize anything for LPs
3. Lack of appreciation for Advocacy as a product
Read 8 tweets
14 Sep
Fuel prices going up in Kenya 🇰🇪 is an opportunity for alternative energy products - solar, ethanol, hybrid taxis... you name it!

This crisis is paving way for the business success stories of tomorrow
Severals example from Kenyan Uber drivers

1. more drivers are considering alternatives such as LPG Pro-gas which retails ~50% vs petrol (70kes vs 129kes). Some drivers have modified vehicles to cater for proGas compatible engines
2. Some Uber drivers are now considering hybrid ( electric & fuel) vehicles such as Honda Insight and Toyota Prius

3. Some taxi drivers have shifted to fully electric vehicles for example Nissan Nopia
Read 11 tweets
13 Sep
E-commerce in Africa is growing & evolving, however, it’s taking place in different forms & channels; a significant amount of transactions are taking place 'informally' on digital channels such as Instagram, Whatsapp, Facebook, Websites, SMS, Voice calls, etc. Via @AfridigestHQ
“I believe e-commerce is just in its first iteration and I, therefore, hold the view that the question’s assumptions are mistaken. E-commerce is inevitable but its characteristics in Africa will look quite different than that of the US or Asia.”
The lack of e-commerce penetration in Africa is partly due to how it is defined. WhatsApp, Twitter, and Facebook (including Instagram) sales allow for the more accessible informal market to flourish. This is where many items in Africa are bought and sold
Read 15 tweets

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