PayU, a Naspers-backed payment services provider has started its operations in Nigeria after approval by the Central Bank of Nigeria in a move to simplify payments and promote cashless payments in the country.
PayU aims to provide simple and secure online payment solutions for both merchants and consumers in Nigeria and help them increase their revenues by enabling merchants to receive online payments whether they have a website or not.
In Nigeria, payU will allow businesses to accept local and international debit, prepaid and credit cards on their webstores or to their mobile or in-store POS with a reporting interface to track and monitor transactions in real-time.
PayU uses its payments heritage and expertise to deliver financial services in emerging markets. The Naspers-backed firm has operations in Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa with 250+ payment methods and PCI certified platforms designed to meet every consumer’s needs.
The markets in which PayU operates represent a potential consumer base of nearly 2.3 billion people and a huge growth potential for merchants. PayU has more than 1,800 payment specialists based in these local markets supporting PayU’s 200,000+ merchants and the millions of consumers making online payments.
In September this year, PayU acquired its smaller rival and Mumbai-based financial technology startup Citrus Payment Solutions Pvt. Ltd in an all-cash deal. Citrus Pay which was valued at $130 million will now operate as a new entity under PayU brand in India and will give a fierce competition to FreeCharge and MobiKwik owned by Snapdeal, and Alibaba-backed Paytm. It will also get access to over 30 million customers and 2,00,000 merchants. It will process about 150 million transactions this year, worth an aggregate amount of $4.2 billion, and will grow at more than 50% every year.
Citrus Pay was founded by Jitendra Gupta and Satyen Kothari in 2011 and had raised about $32 million in risk capital, from Japanese investors Beenos and EContext, both of whom own around 50% in the company. Citrus Pay had also received $25 million from Sequoia and Ascent Capital. The two own 25-30% stake in the company.