African online payment gateway and e-commerce platform Dusupay is working on a peer-to-peer bitcoin payment model which it believes will help it gain early traction.
Ntende Kenneth, director and co-founder of Dusupay, said the company links Africans processing transactions with up to 3000 global businesses.
Dusupay has also built an online payments ecosystem to enable Africans to effect payments across borders using electronic and internet platforms.
The African e-commerce company processed payments worth 100,000,000 GBP in 2017 and executives at the company say this figure could double this year.
Most of the company’s volumes are derived from Rwanda and Nigeria, although it also has a significant presence in other markets such as Uganda.
“The key to e-commerce in Africa in my point of view is built on ability to scale. Our economies are very small, independent of each other. However the ability to combine multiple countries – for example Kenyans being able to easily sell to Ugandans – would be a game-changer,” Kenneth said.
Focus on sales
He advised African start-ups, particularly those operating within e-commerce, to focus on sales first, and believes there is immense potential within intra-continental logistics.
“We do not have any serious companies facilitating how goods are transported within the continent.”
African tech start-ups face several challenges including what Kenneth describes as “a regulation framework that is a little outdated.” Experts have mentioned a lack of government support and limited incubation for potential ventures owing to economic difficulties across most markets in Africa.
In March the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) stated that for most African markets, “…the issue of purchasing power is crucial for e-commerce” to flourish.
While many governments in Africa remain sceptical about cryptocurrencies, these are gaining momentum in countries such as Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
A Zimbabwe court this week lifted a central bank ban on cryptocurrency trades and transactions.