South African fintech startup Zoona has announced it has processed over US$1 billion in money transfers, bill payments and other financial services through its network of entrepreneur agents.
The Zoona platform enables entrepreneurs to provide mobile money services to unbanked or underbanked consumers, with its agents serving more than one million customers every day across close to 1,500 locations in Zambia and Malawi.
“Zoona was born from an idea in a text message. Today we have an important milestone on our journey to become a billion dollar business that helps communities thrive,” said chief executive officer (CEO) Mike Quinn.
“This milestone is a result of focusing on what really matters: ensuring our customers never bounce at a Zoona agent. We will continue to work tirelessly to achieve this goal by building the most trusted agent network in the market so that people can send and receive money when they need to most.”
The startup said its network of agents fulfils an important purpose in emerging markets where financial inclusion rates are low and there are few ways to safely send and receive money.
“As an African business that came up with an African solution to an African problem, we’re thrilled to reach this milestone. It’s a vindication and vote of confidence from our consumers – who have chosen to trust us when sending and receiving money. We are immeasurably grateful for this trust,” said Lelemba Phiri, Zoona’s chief communication officer.
“We are also grateful to our hardworking agents and tellers, who make the Zoona experience real. But most of all, we are thrilled for what this means for financial inclusion and mobile money in Africa.”
Phiri said the strength of the Zoona model rests in its over-the-counter approach, which means customers do not need to open an account, complete any paperwork, or even have a mobile phone in order to benefit from mobile money.