BusinessDay

Fisayo Oludare and Ikenna Agugua; The founders passionate about improving Financial Inclusion in Africa

Financial inclusion didn’t become a buzzword till late 2017 when Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA) was established to make the Nigerian financial system work better, especially for the underserved.

Before the term gained popularity though, several efforts to improve financial inclusion in Nigeria had commenced including the work being done by Advansio Interactive.

Founded by Fisayo Oludare and Ikenna Agugua, Advansio has been an integral part of granting more people in Africa access to financial services via their Agency Banking Solution, COVr branchless, which was launched in 2017. COVr branchless enables individuals who would have otherwise been financially excluded, have access to affordable and timely financial services such as account opening, funds deposits and transfer, cash withdrawals, ATM Cards issuance, bill payment and many more through registered agents who carry out these services on behalf of the banks.

COVr branchless, an agency banking software built by Advansio, is recognized as one of the top fintech innovations by Africans, COVr branchless uses geo tracking to help drive financial inclusion amongst Nigerians and Africans who do not have access to banking services. COVr branchless integrates with portable mobile phones, web and POS devices to automate key financial operations like account opening creation, instant debit card linking.

A bit about the founders, Fisayo Oludare, Founder and CEO of Advansio, is a tech entrepreneur with over 17 years experience helping businesses scale via innovative tech solutions/products across Africa. Prior to founding Advansio, Fisayo led the Agency banking division at a leading fintech company in Nigeria.

Ikenna Agugua, Co-founder and CTO at Advansio is a tech genius and a mentor with over 12 years experience. He has worked extensively as a senior software engineer in top financial institutions in Nigeria and multinational companies. Working as the lead Software engineer in an organization that built agency banking solutions, Ikenna led the Agency Banking Unit alongside Fisayo before realizing that there was a much more sustainable way to improve financial accessibility in Nigeria.

Having a shared passion for improving financial inclusion for Africans and extensive experience working in the FinTech industry, Fisayo and Ikenna made the decision to co-found a Tech Agency focused on building innovative solutions, one of which is COVr branchless.

In an Interview, Fisayo shared his primary motivation for building Advansio; “Having traveled to some parts of the world and coming back to Nigeria, you see that there’s so much you can contribute to the economy but to do this, we must solve the problem of financial inclusion… reducing the cost of banking and increasing access to financial services”

In the five years that Fisayo and Ikenna launched Advansio, their suite of products have impacted millions of Africans across Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia, Guinea and other countries via affordable, easy to use and accessible financial products. Banks are now able to extend their services beyond the walls of a bank to remote parts of the nation via the COVr branchless solution. More people can now open bank accounts, request loans, pay bills without having to visit a bank’s branch. Their solution doesn’t just cater to financial institutions, helping them save operational costs but also caters to the underserved individuals.
In 2017, Advansio was awarded Best Startup at Startup Istanbul, a competition that had over 4,000 participants and 500 startups from 65 countries. This went further to validate the product idea.
Advansio has been recognized as an industry affiliate whose performance has enhanced the industry’s goal of financial inclusion. They are also the exclusive partner of SANEF interoperable platform, a platform dedicated to managing all Agent banking operations across Nigeria.
Currently, the Advansio team has worked with leading Banks in Nigeria and Africa. They built a digital banking product, Onebuxx, which powers Taj Bank, a digital bank in Nigeria while also launching a digital bank in Gambia, BloomBank Digital. One of the top product built by Advansio is Byopay, a biometric payment solution that enables individuals use their facial and fingerprints signatures make payments.
Some of their other clients include; Diamond Bank, Wema Bank, Heritage Bank, Keystone Bank, Jaiz Bank, Nigeria Police Force Microfinance Bank, UBA Guinea, SHARED AGENT NETWORK EXPANSION FACILITIES (SANEF) amongst others.
In the coming months, Advansio will be launching a Credit Management Platform called Grappo. Grappo is a software as a service product that enables lending companies seamlessly

setup and operate their lending company by improving identity management, reducing cost of accessing finance and delivering an overall better user experience.
The Advansio team is constantly ideating and coming up with innovative solutions to improve financial inclusion and financial access in Africa via proprietary products and partnerships with top banks and financial service companies across Africa.

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