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Africa's Outlook for Bitcoin and FinTech

Mon 25 Jan 2021 ▪ 23h04 ▪ 3 min read — by Gloire Kambale Wanzavalere

Africa, the promised land of Bitcoin, crypto and the blockchain – maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration! But now, Africa has a real role to play in the development of crypto and blockchain services.

Large tech investors are now banking on the continent that has the (unfortunate) reputation of being behind in terms of economic and technological development.

Africa’s crypto potential

The crypto industry continues to grow on the African continent. High-tech multinationals such as Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Huawei continue to invest, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey even claims that Africa is the future of Bitcoin (BTC). Here’s an interesting thought: until now, no one has speculated that Satoshi Nakamoto could be African.

Nigeria is positioning itself as a leading nation for the blockchain with the development of crypto start-ups like Opay, a payment platform funded by Chinese investor SoftBank Ventures Asia.

Three countries stand out in this African race for crypto and blockchain projects, with local communities supporting emerging technology initiatives in Kenya, Ethiopia and Ghana.

Here and there, a moving African tech scene

Kenya is one of the first countries in Africa to institutionalise Mobile Payment with the M-Pesa platform.

Kenya-based start-up Sokowatch has proven that it is possible to ‘combine’ the informal economy with large multinationals such as Unilever thanks to its rickshaw delivery service.

In Ethiopia, the government is continuing its investment efforts in the area of tech infrastructure. As the second fastest growing country on the African continent, it is an important player in this new financial ecosystem, welcoming more than 400 participants from 30 countries to the Fourth Annual African FinTech Summit.

Finally, Ghana has supported FinTech from its inception in 1997 with the launch of the Sika Card, an alternative to cash and cheque payments.

Ghana has also launched the first inter-operator payment service and continues to promote the development of new payment solutions, notably with the creation of the E-zwich biometric card.

Will Africa produce some crypto and blockchain wonders by intelligently exploiting the specifics of the continent, and not by simply trying to imitate European, Asian and US countries?

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Gloire Kambale Wanzavalere avatar
Gloire Kambale Wanzavalere

Salut, c’est Gloire. En 2014 j’ai entendu parler de bitcoin à la télé avant de m’intéresser du sujet fin 2017. Depuis, chaque jour j’apprends à le comprendre tout en partageant mes petites découvertes avec la communauté.

DISCLAIMER

The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in this article belong solely to the author, and should not be taken as investment advice. Do your own research before taking any investment decisions.

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