Piggybank vs CowryWise

Saving money is not a strong suit for a lot of people – including this writer. Many of us shuns the discipline that is required to put away some of our “hard earned” money.


It is not a Nigerian problem, it is everywhere. But two Nigerian start-ups have found solutions that they are hoping will revive the culture of saving in the country.


Piggybank and CowryWise are relatively fresh on the financial technology (Fintech) block but have made very good impressions on so many people.


CowryWise which was unveiled in June 2017, is a personal finance platform that enables customers automate their savings and in so doing relieving them of the stress and planning needed on a regular basis.


Piggybank launched its mobile application in July and now has over one thousand people who have downloaded it on the Google Play Store. The platform works directly with financial institutions to enable users save little amounts of money periodically. It should also be noted that the company is one of the fourteen tech start-ups led by Co-Creation hub and Omidyar, which we reported are touring Europe to raise €20 million.



One thing I love about both platforms is this; they are primarily targeted at individuals and not businesses. But as a business person desiring to put away some money for a long time, you can choose any of the platforms.


Like earlier mentioned, Piggybank and CowryWise are ‘new kids on the block’ and while the former (+5) recently released a mobile app, the latter is yet to do so. Both are largely leveraging their websites for new customer acquisition.


They share similar features like users can only earn interest on monies they have saved for quite some time. Piggybank allows users to withdraw from their savings after three months. CowryWise users on the other hand can withdraw “some or all” of their savings together with interest “anytime” without any restrictions or penalties. However, customers can earn more interest the longer their more stays on CowryWise.


Card information on the two platforms is secured by a PCIDSS-compliant payment processor. Paystack handles the card details of users on Piggybank (+5).


CowryWise nonetheless may seem the most ambitious and hungry for market share. First, the platform (+5) offers a ten percent interest per annum on savings which is more than Piggybank’s 6 percent (+4) and most banks’ 4.2 percent.


Also CowryWise invest users money in “risk free instruments” which positions it as a wealth-management platform for users whereas Piggybank only collects the money and “warehouses” it in UBA Nigeria Plc. CowryWise savers’ fund is warehoused by Meristem Trustees Limited.


For risk-averse individuals CowryWise may seem a little too bold a step while Piggybank which aims mainly to instil savings discipline could provide the soft-landing.


But it should be noted that the two platforms are licensed by appropriate regulatory bodies. For instance, Meristem Trustees Limited which partners with CowryWise is registered with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC).


For Piggybank (+5), its UBA Nigeria partnership means that savers’ funds are guaranteed and insured by Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC).


Finally, there is Sisi (+5), CowryWise’s game changing bot. Sisi keeps users updated on their savings performance and plan balances in real-time. But Piggybank is just as cool with the Referral Program (+5) which allows users to earn extra N500 anytime someone creates and activates an account from the users’ Piggybank Stories’ links.


NEXT WEEK ON FINTECH: Access Bank Mobile App vs Stanbic IBTC     

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