M-KOPA’s new management, YouTube Shorts in Nigeria, CribMD’s latest acquisition

by | Jul 13, 2021

This post is a delayed version of Techpoint Digest, a week-daily newsletter that rounds up major happenings in African tech. You can start receiving it hours before everyone else if you subscribe now

Good day,

Today, I’m discussing:

  • M-KOPA’s new management
  • YouTube Shorts in Nigeria
  • Crib-MD’s latest acquisition

Kenya-based M-KOPA appoints new general manager

Babajide Duroshola M KOPA Nigeria General Manager
Source: TechCrunch

In light of M-KOPA’s expansion plans into Nigeria, the company has appointed Babajide Duroshola as its new General Manager. 

Surprise surprise? On the 6th of May 2019, Duroshola was appointed as the first-ever Country Director of Uganda-based bike-hailing startup, SafeBoda, when it expanded into Nigeria. Two years later, in June 2021, he stepped down from the role.

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What’s the connection? One might wonder how Duroshola goes from directing a bike-hailing platform to managing an asset financing platform. Well, there is a link.

In his time at the helm of affairs of Safeboda’s Nigeria branch, he and his team launched a finance offering. Among other things, it enabled drivers to access credit and loan facilities via an asset financing model very similar to M-KOPA’s. 

Given their recent plans to foray into the Nigerian market, M-KOPA claims to have built the world’s most advanced asset-financing platform. With this new appointment, plus an initial pilot test run earlier in the year, it appears their expansion into the country is underway.

However, getting credit in Nigeria is still challenging because of inadequate creditors’ rights and poor access to financial offerings in rural areas. So, questions about the distinct offering M-KOPA is bringing to the table might not be uncalled for.

Later today, our reporter Victoria Fakiya will explore these questions. You don’t want to miss it.

Nigerians can now access YouTube Shorts creative tools

hello i m nik pYoj2nyokOg unsplash
Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash

Google-owned video-sharing platform, YouTube is launching its Shorts feature in Nigeria. It will be available in Beta version to Nigerians by the 14th of July.

What’s the difference? As the name implies, YouTube Shorts allows users to make catchy 60-second videos on their mobile phones using creation tools like a multi-segment camera to string multiple video clips together, record with music, and control speed settings.

Looks familiar, if you ask me. Since the video-sharing platform, TikTok became famous for its short videos and mobile-accessible tools, the launch of Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts seem like a means to maintain their audience’s full attention.

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YouTube Shorts was first announced and launched in September 2020, only available in 26 countries. Their expansion to Nigeria is in line with a current move into the countries — over 100 — where YouTube is available.

What’s the big picture? The platform claims that this new feature aligns with its continuous commitment to help creators turn their creativity into businesses and become the next generation of media companies.

Haven’t missed out yet. In May, YouTube announced via a blog post a $100 million Short Funds to be distributed to Shorts content creators whose videos receive massive engagements between 2021 and 2022.

With smartphone penetration in Nigeria predicted to grow to more than 140 million by 2025, this reflects the increasing use of smartphones in the country. Top this with zero need for filming equipment, and it just might be safe to conclude that access to these tools could see a rise in the number of the country’s YouTube creators.

CribMD acquires Charisland Pharmaceuticals

Team Pic
CribMD team. Source: Supplied

Still in the spirit of expansion, Nigeria-based healthtech startup, CribMD, has acquired Charisland Pharmaceuticals to bolster quick access to drugs for patients.

Information released by the International Finance Corporation(IFC)  revealed that only a few African countries could afford the World Health Organization’s recommended healthcare annual bill of $34 to $40 per person.

In the grand scheme of things, this not only widens the startup’s pharmaceutical network but goes a long way in deepening the reach of health care services to those in need in the country.

This article provides further details of the acquisition: 

Nigeria’s CribMD acquires Charisland Pharmaceuticals to facilitate quick drug deliveries to patients

In case you missed it

What else I’m reading/watching

  • Handwriting Is Better Than Typing When Learning a New Language, Study Finds. Read.
  • I Tried Maya Angelou’s (fantastic) Daily Routine. Watch.
  • What the narrative that Africans value a “strong man who can get things done” gets wrong. Read

Have an amazing day!

Joy Matthew
Joy Matthew

Out here, trying so hard to maintain my faculty of wonder in a fast-changing world. Language, books, and aspiring tech enthusiast. Keep in touch

On January 22, 2022, be part of the largest gathering of innovators, startup founders, thinkers, programmers, policymakers, and investors in West Africa. Register free.

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