Visa, the world’s largest payments company, has announced that it will invest $1 billion in Africa by 2027, taking advantage of the continent’s booming digital payments industry.
This commitment was made by Visa CEO Al Kelly on Wednesday at the U.S.-Africa Business Forum, a sub-event of the larger U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, where U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has invited African heads of state and senior government officials to discuss a wide range of topics, from food security to climate change.
Visa CEO: “Our commitment to Africa is as robust and unyielding as it was when we first began investing there more than three decades ago.” Visa’s long-term growth goals continue to place Africa at the centre of the company’s attention, and Visa’s daily operations in every country on the continent enable digital commerce and the movement of money. To further spur Africa’s digital economy, we look forward to maintaining our close collaboration with our partners in order to develop the financial ecosystem, quicken the pace of digitization, and construct economies that are both resilient and innovative, as well as socially and economically inclusive for all.
According to the release, the investment would allow Visa to expand its presence in Africa and strengthen its ties to the continent’s governments, banks, mobile network providers, financial technology companies, and retailers.
Visa estimates that more than 40 million businesses in Africa do not accept digital payments, despite the fact that more than 500 million individuals there are either underbanked or unbanked. The payment giant believes this new investment, which will be spread out over five years, will facilitate additional opportunities to expand financial inclusion on the continent. This comes after the company invested via various partnerships for several years, contributing significantly to the current digital payments boom in Africa.
“Africa is experiencing an unprecedented digital acceleration, with a growing number of consumers, merchants and businesses realizing the benefits of secure and convenient digital payments to fuel commerce and money movement,” said Aida Diarra, the senior vice president of Visa sub-Saharan Africa. “Over the past year, Visa has continued growing our investment in Africa through new offices, new innovations and solutions, and programs that are directly supporting financial inclusion. The investment pledge outlines our long-term commitment to Africa and the work we will do to help advance the financial ecosystem.”
As Diarra emphasised, Visa has recently established local operations for the first time in Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Sudan as part of its commitment to witnessing the continuous expansion of digital payments (including the tremendous possibilities crypto payments) in Africa. Visa pointed out that these offices facilitate monetary transactions in those nations. The company has also highlighted other strategic initiatives, such as the creation of an innovation studio in Nairobi in the month of April and the introduction of new payment methods for customers and businesses, such as the Tap to Phone.
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