• Sunday, May 19, 2024
businessday logo


Aella collaborates with Amazon to empower under banked individuals in Nigeria

Aella collaborates with Amazon to empower under banked individuals in Nigeria

Aella App, Nigeria’s leading single-point financial service and payment solutions organization, is working with Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS) to empower underbanked individuals to have quicker access to credit and other financial services using Amazon Rekognition for identity verification.

Amazon Rekognition is a fully managed computer vision service that enables developers to analyse images and videos for a variety of use cases including face identification and verification, media intelligence, custom industrial automation, and workplace safety. With the lack of application programming interface ( API) infrastructure that allows the real-time verification of Government IDS in Nigeria, Aella App is changing the fintech ecosystem by taking advantage of cutting-edge AI technologies and using biometric identity verification on its mobile application, improving the accuracy of facial verification by over 40 percent. This significantly reduces verification errors, increases credit approval speed, provides scalability and drives financial inclusivity for everyone.

Speaking on the impetus for the collaboration, Aella App’s CEO, Akin Jones said, “With only 38 percent of Nigerians having any form of identification, we realized that a vast majority of the population were being left behind on financial services, taking away their financial independence and leaving them on the fringe of building bankable credit ratings. Our job as a fintech organization is to come up with more creative ways to bring more people into the ecosystem, reinforcing our commitment to provide products that democratize financial services for all, ultimately alleviating poverty and driving economic growth in the region”.

Read also: Nigerian lenders tighten credit criteria as default rates worsened in Q4’20

Wale Akanbi, CTO, Aella App, laid further emphasis by saying, “Amazon Rekognition facilitates faster customer access to our products because we can now verify an individual’s identity without human intervention. As a fintech organization founded to provide financial access and inclusivity for everyone, this has been instrumental in letting us focus on our core operation which is to provide credit to the under banked. AWS’S solution cuts our process time from a month or a week to a matter of seconds, placing us well above our competitors in the ecosystem. The ability to properly identify users has been a key hindrance in building credit for billions of people in emerging markets, but our use of Amazon Rekognition has helped us with KYC [know your customer], discover overlapping profiles, and duplicate datasets that would have slowed down our process”.

Michelle K. Lee, Vice President, Amazon Machine Learning Solutions Lab, Amazon Web Services, reaffirmed AWS’S commitment to developing technology that can help tackle some of our world’s hardest problems, saying, “We are impressed by Aella’s dedication to driving financial independence for the under banked, including the under banked in Nigeria. With the fintech ecosystem in Nigeria accounting for 1.25 percent of retail banking revenues, it’s clear that there is opportunity to continue democratizing financial service access for all. We are proud to work with Aella as they strive to ensure everyone from individuals to small business owners are not left without financial support and have equal opportunities to build a credit history for themselves.”