What Nigeria should expect as M-KOPA appoints former SafeBoda Country Head as General Manager

What Nigeria should expect as M-KOPA appoints former SafeBoda Country Head as General Manager

Source: TechCrunch Kenyan asset-financing company, M-KOPA, has appointed Babajide Duroshola as General Manager. This is coming a month after he resigned as former Country Head for SafeBoda — Uganda-based bike-hailing startup — in Nigeria, where he worked for two years.

Launched in 2011 with Jesse Moore — CEO — Chad Larson, and Nick Hughes as co-founders, M-KOPA is a connected asset-financing platform that claims to offer millions of underbanked customers access to products and services that have the potential to improve their lives significantly.

The company pioneered the wider pay-as-you-go (PAYG) solar market in Kenya. It has grown over the years to offer customers in Kenya and Uganda electronic appliances like televisions and refrigerators, as well as financial services.

Customers can gradually acquire ownership through its PAYG financing model by making an initial deposit followed by flexible and affordable micropayments.

In East Africa, M-KOPA claims to have sold over 1 million PAYG solar systems and provided $400 million in financing to millions of customers while raising over $180 million in equity and debt.

In 2020, the company expanded its offering in Kenya by partnering with Safaricom and Samsung to offer smartphone financing.

A trial run in the Nigerian market was conducted earlier this year by offering customers solar system and smartphone financing options. The company partners with Samsung and Airtel Nigeria to make smartphone financing accessible to its customers.

In one month, due to increased acceptance of smartphone financing, M-KOPA reportedly sold over 20,000 smartphones in Lagos — its first market in Nigeria. However, as of June 12 2021, when we spoke to an M-KOPA customer care agent, only five Samsung phones were up for sale.

While the outcome of the trial run was seen as a significant step forward for the company, M-KOPA believes that Duroshola’s appointment is an essential requirement to scale the service rapidly in Nigeria.

At M-KOPA, Duroshola is expected to drive its activities in Nigeria further, even as it plans to reach more users. Having expanded to Oyo state in June 2021, M-KOPA is now present in Lagos and Oyo states.

Per TechCrunch , Duroshola joined M-KOPA partly because he found the credit space exciting while at SafeBoda. The bike-hailing startup also runs an asset-financing model by offering smartphones to its riders.The former Andela Community manager has a track record of accomplishment in his previous post. Following SafeBoda’s expansion plans into Nigeria in 2019, Duroshola and his team onboarded 5,000 drivers. They completed more […]

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