Pictured above (L-R): Chijioke Dozie, OneFi Founder and CEO; Maxwell Obi, Amplify co-founder and CTO.
One Finance and Investment Limited (OneFi), the company behind consumer lending app, Paylater recently announced its acquisition of Amplified Payments Limited for an ‘undisclosed fee’. The announcement is coming barely two weeks after OneFi announced securing a $5m debt facility from Lendable.
Amplified Payments Limited (Amplify) is a Nigerian fintech company whose primary offerings are mTransfers, a social banking solution and AmplifyPay, a payment gateway than enables subscription-based businesses accept recurring payments.
As part of the acquisition deal, OneFi gets ownership of mTransfers and AmplifyPay. It also acquires Amplify’s other assets, including its trademark, some of the team, and a client network of over 1000 merchants, to its portfolio.
Amplify co-founder and CTO, Maxwell Obi, will join the OneFi team to “oversee the payments direction of the company”. However, his partner and Amplify CEO, Segun Adeyemi will be moving on from the company.
Both Maxwell and Segun are alumni of MEST, the Accra, Ghana-based entrepreneurial school. It was there that they met and conceived the idea for a recurring payments solution called ‘SlushPay’ in 2015. Months later in 2016, they relaunched as Amplify, having graduated and secured equity investment from MEST.
According to MEST Managing Director, Aaron Fu, Amplify is his organisation’s 5th exit in its 11-year history. The entrepreneurial school usually invests between $50,000 to $250,000, for less than 10% stake, in its successful graduates. A healthy guesstimate should put the value of Paylater’s acquisition in the seven-figure range.
For OneFi, the acquisition brings a lot of benefits. For the past year, the company has been ramping up efforts to become a one-stop-shop for not just lending but savings, bill payments and credit reporting.
Just last July, Paylater introduced PayVest, a savings feature into its Paylater lending app. They also included a wallet feature that created a bit of friction for users who wished to spend money outside the app. In a recent interview with TechCrunch, OneFi founder and CEO, Chijioke Dozie, hinted at adding “payment options for clients on social media apps including WhatsApp this quarter”.
“Today’s announcement signals OneFi’s first acquisition; a strategic decision that kicks off our transformation from a digital lender to a diverse digital financial services platform focused on transactions, payments and loans and will ensure we meet our ambitious goal of doubling our size in Nigeria this year,” Dozie concluded in a press statement.
Amplify’s expertise in recurring payments processing and socially-enabled P2P transactions will no doubt prove valuable to OneFi’s ambition.
Nigerian startups raised $377m in 2019, more than twice what they did in 2018. Find out more when you download the full report.