The moves come a little over a year after Paga raised a US$10 million Series B round and Oviosu announced the company’s intent to expand globally, while speaking at Disrupt San Francisco.
Behind the acquisition is a story threaded with serendipity, return, and collaboration.
Both Paga and Apposit were founded by repatriate entrepreneurs.
Apposit dedicated an engineering team to build Paga’s payment platform, Eric Chijioke became Paga’s CTO (while maintaining his Apposit role) and Apposit backed Paga.
A decade later, the two companies have come pretty far. Apposit has grown its business into a team of 63 engineers and technicians and has racked up a list of client partnerships.
The company helped digitize the Ethiopian Commodities Exchange and has entered into contracts on IT and software solutions with banks non-profits and brick and mortar companies while also supporting Paga’s payment product development
Paga ,on the other hand, has over the 10 year period created a multi-channel network to transfer money, pay-bills, and buy things digitally.
With the acquisition, Paga absorbs Apposit’s tech capabilities and team of 63 engineers.
The company will direct its boosted capabilities and total workforce of 530 to support expansion.
Paga aims to shift the financial needle in the country that is yet to fully embrace digital finance with less than 1% of the population using mobile-money.
“The goal is straight-forward. We want Ethiopians to use the Paga wallet as their payment account. So it’s about digitizing cash transactions and driving financial services,” said Oviosu.
“There are several very large countries around the world in Africa, Latin America, Asia where these [financial inclusion] problems still exist. So our strategy is not an African strategy…We want to go where these problems exist in a large way and build a global payments business,” Oviosu said.