Cellulant exits mobile money sector as CBN revokes licence

March 29, 2024
2 min read
  • African payments company, Cellulant has exited the Nigerian mobile money sector to focus on delivering payment services to businesses, following the revocation of its mobile money license by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
  • The CBN said it's revoking Cellulant’s mobile money licence due to the payments company's decision to cease operations under the licence. 
  • According to the Cellulant, “The regulator did not revoke the licence as a result of infractions or any breach. The CBN succeeded in gazetting this request in December 2023, occasioned by the time it took them to conclude the process of revoking the mobile money license as requested by Cellulant”. 

The company added that their decision to shift to offering payment solutions has been on “as far back as 2021” leading to obtaining a Payment Solution Service Provider (PSSP) license from the CBN, which has been granted and is currently operational. 

Recall that it announced on February 16, 2023, that it had renewed its PSSP license. The licence allows the company to provide online and offline payment solutions, including collections, check-out, biller aggregation, and payout services securely to thousands of businesses across Nigeria.

Founded in 2002 as a music streaming platform, Cellulant has gone on to rebrand to a fintech company offering services including, digital payments and managing an ecosystem of retailers, merchants, banks, mobile network operators, governments, and international development partners.

The company operates physically across 18 African countries with claims of offering more than 154 payment options in 34 countries, and connecting 220 million users to a single inclusive network, enabling interoperability. 

Recently, Cellulant has been making headlines for various issues. In early 2023, it initiated a restructuring process after facing challenges in securing funding. Throughout the year, the company laid off thrice, attributing the move to "strategic operational adjustments" aimed at improving efficiency and supporting growth.

Fast forward to January 2024, the CEO of the company, Akshay Grover stepped down to “ focus on personal matters”

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