OkHi is a smart addressing startup out of Nairobi, Kenya in partnership with Africa’s largest banking platform Interswitch and rolling itself out in Africa’s largest market, Nigeria with the aim of providing 195-million Nigerians with access to a physical addresses, which will in return lead to the acceleration of eCommerce and assurance of financial inclusion.
Smart addressing systems lets people attach an email address, phone number, and their account details to make seamless payments rid of having to remember account details and the Bank State Branch number, and the platform launching in Nigeria will reportedly save around $2-billion annually and spur innovation across the nation’s economy.
The startup uses a GPS pin that is connected to an individual’s name and phone number in handling the issue of lack of postal addressing infrastructure, which now allows businesses to get accurate address information without delivery time delay.
Timbo Drayson, CEO, and Co-founder of OkHi explained in an official press release, how the partnership will utilize Interswitch’s expertise and technology savviness to raise inclusivity, he further stated:
“OkHi gives addresses not only to places but also to people. From e-commerce businesses to banks and emergency services, our technology enables people to be included in accessing services they need and deserve. We are so excited about the start of our Nigerian journey…
With Interswitch, we have a partner and investor whose technology has already had a massive impact on millions of Nigerians. Their expertise and infrastructure will position us to scale country-wide as quickly as possible.
COVID-19 is accelerating the digital migration across Africa – people and businesses are more online than ever, while home deliveries have grown exponentially. What’s exciting is we are the infrastructure that enables that migration.”
OkHi recently sealed a $1.5-million seed round, led by Asian VC Betaron, Founders Factory Africa, and Interswitch.
The partnership between OkHi and Interswitch comes from the new investment round that accelerates the growth of the company.
The platform’s success in Kenya significantly cut the cost of delivery by 20% and reduced delivery time by 40%.
Interswitch’s Group’s Divisional Chief Executive Officer for Industry Vertical Markets, Jonah Adams, made mention how the new address verification engine will continuously verify locations that will bring down cost, time, and risk.
“Our partnership with, and investment into OkHi is premised on their vision and capacity to execute collaboratively, to drive e-commerce growth across key African markets by mitigating the bottlenecks which are stifling growth…
Whilst digital payments remain our key focus, we see the bigger picture, identifying opportunities to unlock significant economic value through trusted address verification.” He said
The expansion in Nigeria goes in line with with the startup’s primary objective of providing the reported 4-billion people without a physical address an opportunity to be included.
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