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Paga begins expansion with acquisition of software company Apposit

GIF partner Paga, Nigeria’s largest mobile money operator, has announced its acquisition of Apposit, a technology company based in Ethiopia that builds software to power businesses in Africa.

US software company Apposit, which has primary operations in Addis Ababa, is already a strategic partner to Paga and has dedicated an engineering team to the company since 2009, led by Eric Chijioke, who is also Paga’s Chief Technology Officer.

Paga Founder & CEO, Tayo Oviosu, said: “Our favorite motto at Paga is that we go farther together as a team, and this is exemplified in our decision to take our trusted business relationship with Apposit one step further and have them fully become a part of the Paga family. By doing so, we not only gain a scalable world-class internal engineering team, but we also are in a stronger position to grow our global payments business.”

In 2018, Paga announced a $10million raise in growth financing and made it known that it had begun exploring opportunities in other economies similar to Nigeria in efforts to build a global emerging markets payments powerhouse.

This vision led Paga to pinpoint Ethiopia as one of the viable countries with similar cash and payment problems identified in Nigeria and introduce its services to the market. Acquiring Apposit provides Paga with an instant go-to-market strategy to launch the Paga service in Ethiopia under the vast experience and leadership of Adam Abate, Apposit co-founder & CEO, who will now become the CEO of Paga Ethiopia. The company will now also own Apposit’s other in-house technology products, Terra and Tangio.

Terra is a digital agricultural platform that provides products and tools to collect, manage and analyse data in agricultural value chains. The Terra platform harnesses the power of data to improve decision making in agriculture. Tangio is a sales force automation platform for manufacturers and distributors of FMCG (fast-moving consumer goods) products, providing companies the tools and intelligence to plan and execute their route to market strategies.

The leadership team at Apposit will be absorbed into the leadership structure at Paga, retaining Eric Chijoke as the Chief Technology Officer responsible for product development, Simon Solomon becoming the Lead Systems Architect, and Gideon Abate as the Head of Product Innovation. The 62 team members of Apposit will now join the rest of the Paga organisation bringing the total staff strength of Paga to over 530 people. With this acquisition, Paga is now poised to build a global product development organization with teams based in Lagos, Addis Ababa, London, and Mexico City.

Paga is Nigeria’s leading mobile money and multi-channel digital financial services platform, and a GIF success story, now in its 11th year of operations. Paga’s journey began in 2009 and a lot has happened since: 104 million transactions have been processed, worth $6.6 billion, by over 14 million users and its 25,000 agents operating across all 36 states in Nigeria. Paga is on a mission to help one billion people access and use their money, and transition users in the emerging context to a digital economy.

Tayo Oviosu said: “Last year we refined our mission and vision to birth our massive transformative purpose: To make it simple for one billion people to access and use money. Apposit has demonstrated strong alignment with our purpose and they have some of the very best engineers I have been privileged to work with, in over two decades in technology in Silicon Valley and elsewhere. I am very excited to have Apposit join the Paga team.”

Adam Abate, Apposit CEO, said: “The acquisition of Apposit by Paga is a very natural progression in the close relationship we have enjoyed with Paga over the last 10 years. We are excited to join forces with Paga at a time where Ethiopia embarks in earnest on its digital transformation. As one company we will solve the use of cash and bring access to finance to millions of people in Ethiopia and beyond. Our companies are strongly aligned in terms of values, culture, and purpose, and leveraging Paga’s vast experience and robust payments platform will position us for success. We also look forward to strengthening Paga’s product team and continuing to build technology that will be used globally.”

Read our 2019 blog, Celebrating 10 years of Paga, here.