During a recent panel at the Africa Financial Industry Summit, Olugbenga Agboola – the founder and CEO of financial services company Flutterware – was asked a simple question. Fintech has a long established history in Africa, and others on the panel wanted to know what the “next frontier” would be in the sector. His answer was a simple one:
Olugbenga Agboola indicated that there are a number of different companies operating today that are quickly becoming what is known as the “Robinhood of Africa.” He cited organizations like PiggyVest, Bamboo, and Cowrywise, all of which are based in Nigeria. Although the companies themselves are very different, they’re all operating with the same basic goal in mind: they want to make it as easy as possible for locals to invest in not only the African stock market, but the global markets as well.
The phrase he used is an important one – Robinhood is a company based in the United States that acts as a share trading platform. Its own founders wanted to give everyone access to the global financial markets, not just those in society that have the most money. Now, it’s time for organizations in Africa to accomplish the exact same thing.
This is also a part of what Olugbenga Agboola set out to accomplish when he founded his own company, Flutterware, in 2016. Flutterware is a payments processing business that allows for cross-border transactions between people living in Africa and others who live elsewhere around the world. After raising an initial investment of $225 million, Flutterwave is currently valued at more than $1 billion – so you could say that things have been going successfully so far.
Born in 1985 in Nigeria, Olugbenga Agboola has already developed the type of career that most people can only dream of. During his educational career, he studied at the esteemed Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he earned his Masters of Business Administration. He also received a Masters Degree in Information Technology Security and Behavioral Engineering.
He went on to receive his standard IT security certifications from EC-Council University in New Mexico. From there, he went to London and attended the University of Westminster. It was here that he received his Advanced Computing degree
As his career began in earnest, Olugbenga Agboola put all of that education to good use almost immediately. He started work as an applications developer for British Telecom Professional Services before moving onto being an Application Engineer at PayPal. During this period he was also a member of the Enterprise Infrastructure Solution Development team at GTB.
For two years, he was also the Head of Digital Factory and Innovation at Access Bank. Then, once he finished a management program at Wharton School, he co-founded Flutterwave. It would then go on to become one of the top five Fintech unicorns in all of Africa.
All of this is to say that when Olugbenga Agboola says that the future of Fintech in Africa is investment-based technology, it’s a good idea to listen to what he has to say.