BY Fast Company SA 2 MINUTE READ

Sillicon Valley-based global payment technology platform Flutterwave is continuing its aggressive expansion across Africa when it enters South Africa this month. The Y-Combinator backed fintech startup was granted a license in April by the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) to operate in the country, increasing its footprint across the continent. Flutterwave will launch RAVE, its digital product for merchants with events scheduled for Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town.

RAVE is an end-to-end payments solution that enables merchants including banks, licensed money transfer operators, payment service providers to receive and process payments from multiple payment options via a single integration. Accepting and processing global payments from credit and debit cards, bank accounts, and USSD solves the challenge of a highly fragmented payments landscape across Africa. This distinguishes RAVE from other payment solutions as RAVE allows channel and currency agnostic payments across Africa and globally. In the process, RAVE provides a solution for one of the greatest challenges facing business in South Africa – access to regional and global markets.

Allowing a one stop solution for payments across multiple African countries and other parts of the world means merchants are able to receive, process and settle payments with ease. Which is in line with Flutterwaves audacious mission to, “inspire a new wave of prosperity across Africa by building payments infrastructure to connect Africa to the global economy”. Articulating this vision, Flutterwave’s Co-Founder and CEO, Olugbenga ‘GB’ Agboola says that “We are more than just a payments company, we are in the business of growing businesses.” Local merchant such as RSA Made, the official e-store of Proudly South African (both entities promote the manufacture and consumption of locally made South African goods and services), have integrated RAVE’s payment processing onto their digital property. “With over 150 supported currencies, you can just imagine how this will benefit RSAMade’s online platform, this is going to assist in increasing sales across Africa as  customers can now pay in their preferred currency and thus improving their overall experience.” says Karambe Jabbie, Co-Founder and CEO of RSA Made.

In addition to easy integration with merchant platforms, RAVE’s payment links can be attached to invoices, social media pages, or even shared on Whatsapp. This RAVE feature allows merchants to tap into the rapidly growing consumption trends across the continent which have been spurred by increased activity on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp.

Similar to RSA Made and Proudly South African, Flutterwave is a proudly African company that powers payment processing for Uber, and African e-commerce unicorn, and counts Facebook, Transferwise, Flywire as clients. The company has received funding from Mastercard, Omidyar Network, Y Combinator as well as other notable Silicon Valley venture firms.

Named as Fast Company’s second most innovative African business in 2019, Flutterwave has, to date, raised over USD $20 million from global investors.

Flutterwave was co-founded by then 26-year old Iyin Aboyeji, a tech genius who also co-founded Andela, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s first major investment in Africa. Founded with a vision to increase intra-Africa trade, Flutterwave aims to get Africa to view itself as a single trading bloc so as to leverage the power of that unity. Speaking at the time, Aboyeji said, “I believe if Africa will come to the table on the global stage, we have to come as one. We are far more powerful economically than our politics suggests.”

South Africa becomes the 10th African country that Flutterwave has a presence in, following successful launches in Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, Rwanda, Ivory Coast and Sierra Leone.