Carbon, a pan-African fintech company providing access to basic financial services for Africans, has announced a strategic five-year partnership with Visa, the world leader in digital payments, to offer both digital and physical issuance of Visa cards to its customers.
Carbon is launching Visa debit cards in the third quarter of 2021, roughly a year after shifting from being a leading digital lending company to becoming a digital bank offering a range of financial services including, savings and payments. By leveraging Visa’s payment functionalities, Carbon will deploy an instant issuance process in three key markets including Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya.
The collaboration between both companies includes financial support from Visa and will be spread over the five-year partnership period. The funds will be used to provide implementation and marketing support to help drive further growth and adoption of Visa’s payment solutions across Carbon’s products.
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“Carbon is focused on delivering an unparalleled banking experience that is both safe and reliable across all touchpoints,” said Chijioke Dozie, CEO/Co-founder of Carbon. “We want more customers to enjoy some of our popular products like Carbon Zero through their Carbon card, and key to achieving this is our partnership with a leading payments and fintech-friendly company like Visa.”
With the arrival of debit cards, Carbon is building on its fast-growing user base of over 650,000 customers and a strong 2020 fiscal year which saw the company process ₦96.54 billion (~$241.35 million) in payments and ₦25.21 billion (~$63 million) in loan disbursements, eclipsing the previous year’s numbers despite the pandemic.
“The rapid pace of technology innovation has driven a powerful shift in business and consumer expectations in finance,” said Kemi Okusanya, Vice President, Visa West Africa. “Whether it is changing the way people invest, manage money, receive loans, or send real-time payments to friends and family, Visa is a natural partner for fintechs including Carbon, providing them with new ways to reach their customers through Visa’s vast network and global scale.”
Adding Visa cards to its payments stack will also enable easier access to Carbon Zero, the company’s Buy Now Pay Later product, which allows consumers zero percent financing on items they need the most but cannot afford immediately.
The partnership with Visa will undoubtedly go a long way in consolidating Carbon’s first-rate digital bank status and facilitate a robust payment experience for consumers across different demographics with unique financial needs.