SIERRA LEONE – Mobile money company MFS Africa has entered Sierra Leone via a partnership with mobile network operator Africell’s mobile money business, Afrimoney.
As a result of the partnership between MFS Africa and Afrimoney, users of mobile transfer operators that are connected to MFS Africa’s hub, including MoneyGram, World Remit and Xoom, will be able to send money to digital currency mobile wallets within Sierra Leone.
The partnership follows Africell’s receipt of a US$105 million commercial loan facility to help drive its African growth plans, last month.
MFS Africa’s hub is connected to over 320 million mobile wallets, which means there is a large number of possibilities for cross-border money transfers.
“To drive growth in Sierra Leone, bringing more people into the financial system is essential” explained MFS Africa’s CEO and founder Dare Okoudjou in a statement, adding that the partnership is expected to develop new financial pathways to the market.
“Africell offers a compelling and easy way for Sierra Leonean people and businesses to access financial services easily. We’re expanding the possibilities for users by making it seamless and cost-effective to receive money across borders.”
“We’re expanding the possibilities for users by making it seamless and cost-effective to receive money across borders.”Dare Okoudjou – CEO and Founder, MFS Africa
Over 50% of yearly household consumption in Sierra Leone is made up of money sent from overseas, playing a key role in the country’s economic development, and as of 2017, fewer than one in five individuals in Sierra Leone held a bank account.
The alternative, mobile money, allows users to receive payments from abroad in a more seamless and affordable fashion.
“Afrimoney is driving greater financial inclusion in Sierra Leone and other African countries and that the partnership with MFS Africa adds to the strength of the Afrimoney platform by linking us to more international mobile transfer operators and giving these operators superior access to the growing market of Sierra Leone,” Afrimoney group director Andy Widmann said.
“Remittances are an important source of economic value for Sierra Leone and that the collaboration with MFS Africa will make them easier and more affordable for customers.”
This comes months after Airtel Africa’s money management arm’s disposal of a minority stake in the business, to funds controlled by TPG.
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