Interswitch, Paga Adopt Open Banking

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Oluchi Chibuzor

Interswitch, Africa’s integrated digital payment company and pioneer mobile payments firm, Paga, have joined other stakeholders in Nigeria’s financial services industry to adopt Open Banking to deepen financial services in the country.

This, the companies said was aimed at driving innovation and choice for customers, businesses, financial technology firms, banks and other players in Nigeria’s financial ecosystem.

They revealed in a statement recently that both firms respectively entered into partnership with Open Technology Foundation (OTF), a not-for-profit organisation driving the development and adoption of Open Banking standards in Nigeria.
The addition of Interswitch and Paga as the newest corporate members of the Open Banking Nigeria would serve to further drive the adoption and promotion of a standard Application Programming Interface (API) for financial services in Nigeria, the statement added.

The Divisional Chief Executive Officer for Payment Processing at Interswitch, Akeem Lawal, said of the 47 countries at various stages of Open Banking implementation, Nigeria was the only African country.

“At Interswitch, we believe that standardised APIs would significantly transform payments in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Nigeria is a global leader in payments and is expected to similarly lead with Open APIs.
“As an organisation, we are committed to working with banks and the Central Bank to actualise the Open Banking agenda of the Payment Systems Vision 2030,” he noted.

Speaking on Paga’s collaboration with the Open Technology Foundation, Co-founder and Director of Business Development, Paga, Jay Alabraba said: “We understand the importance of collaboration to achieve the goal of extending the frontiers of payments and financial services as a whole.

“Partnering with Open Technology and other industry stakeholders would further advance our innovative drive, broaden the wide range of our solution offerings to customers, and favourably position Paga to contribute to deepening financial inclusion in Nigeria.”

On his part, a trustee at Open Banking Nigeria, Ope Adeoye, welcomed Interswitch and Paga to the movement of like-minded futuristic stakeholders working together to build the next generation of Application Programming Interface (API) standard for the Nigerian banking and financial services industry.

“Paga is a mobile payment company that has served over 12 million customers and processed over 72 million transactions worth $4.6 billion in a decade. The firm is building an ecosystem to enable people to digitally send and receive money and creating simple financial access for everyone.

“Providing convenience and real value for consumers, Interswitch is an Africa-focused integrated digital payments and commerce company that facilitates the electronic circulation of money as well as the exchange of value between individuals and organisations on a timely and consistent basis,” he said