Paystack, a Nigerian fintech startup, has announced its official expansion to South Africa, one of Africa’s largest markets.
Founded in 2015 by Shola Akinlade (CEO) and Ezra Olubi (CTO), Paystack uses its API to assist businesses with payment processing, and has active operations in Nigeria and Ghana.
The startup raised $8 million in Series A funding in 2018, which it planned to use to expand into Ghana. Stripe, a leading US payments company, acquired Paystack for $200 million in October 2020, paving the way for a massive expansion into the African market.
Paystack’s South Africa expansion began with a six-month pilot phase that likely started a month after Stripe’s acquisition.
During this period, Paystack is said to have collaborated with a variety of businesses and built a local team to handle on-the-ground operations.
The company, which is backed by Stripe in the United States, intends to take advantage of Africa’s growing online commerce sector.
Payments are just one of several deep challenges that eCommerce faces on the continent, which currently accounts for less than 3% of global eCommerce activity. However, with the right approach, this could drastically change, and Paystack appears to be betting heavily on that growth.