Kenya’s Equity Group turns Finserve subsidiary to fintech
Kenya-based Equity Group has taken its mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) Finserve into the magical realm of fintech.
Finserve, which has already been active under the trading name Equitel, will now operate as an autonomous commercial enterprise, delivering solutions to Equity Group and other firms if they show an interest.
The move is Equity Group’s (formerly Equity Bank Group) desire to get more fintech action.
Equity Group CEO and MD Dr. James Mwangi says: “Thanks to fintech innovations by Finserve, 97% of all Equity transactions are now outside the branch [and] we have taken a deliberate strategy to make Finserve an independent commercial subsidiary.”
It already has plenty of products. For example, customers using the Equitel SIM card can manage their bank accounts from their mobile phones – using EazzyPay, applying and receiving Eazzy Loan on their phones as well as making calls and buying data bundles.
It also has Eazzy Banking, a suite of digital tools for mobile banking through the app.
Finserve has already integrated with companies like Alipay and WeChat.
Mwangi says it controls 60% of the market share in merchant banking and payments “because our universal POS converges mobile wallets, cards and digital payments meaning that merchants require only one POS”.
For the relaunch, Finserve unveiled two solutions, the Jenga Payment Gateway and Jenga APIs.
The gateway supports businesses in processing payments in the “crowded” East African payment space. It consolidates all payments to the Jenga platform and presents one integration platform to businesses.
Jenga APIs provide a platform for businesses to send money, buy, pay, manage their accounts, manage credit, withdraw and conduct know your customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) querying. It offers 64 fintech, regtech and insurtech APIs.
The group is not limited to Kenya as it has subsidiaries in Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan and DR Congo.