Verve Vows to Deepen Financial Inclusion in Nigeria

**Controls 95% Market Share in Gambia

By Adedapo Adesanya 

Nigeria’s leading electronic paynent platform launched by Interswitch Group, Verve, celebrated its 10th year of operating in the country on Friday, September 27, 2019.

Marking the occasion with a media parley in Lagos, the company spoke on the journey so far, the challenges that followed the innovation, and what it expects to achieve in the future.

Speaking on the Verve story, the Verve International Divisional CEO, Mr Mike Ogbalu III, expressed his excitement about this milestone occasion, saying the idea was born out of the need to serve the general public.

He noted that when the debit based innovation came into existence, Nigerian banks were skeptical about its ability to serve the average customer.

According to Mr Ogbalu, Access Bank and the defunct Intercontinental Bank aligned themselves with the Verve vision and showed more belief in the dream when the idea was sold to them.

He praised these two financial institutions for believing in the innovation which led to the issuance of Verve cards by Nigerian banks, making it possible for the indigenous brand to compete well with other international competitors.

He further said with the introduction of Verve instant issuance technology into the market, bank activity rose drastically as a result of customers being able to get their personalised debit cards on time.

Mr Ogbalu said that despite the competitiveness amid the economic challenges, Verve will continue to evolve as its cards were now issued as both physical and virtual systems in Nigeria and 12 countries across the African continent.

“It is incredible to think about it that a brand that started here in Nigeria is solving problems across Africa.

“With Verve, we are taking a piece of Nigeria to the world,” he added.

Mr Ogbalu further said that Verve has found its way across the international payment space and had even beaten the two year expectation set for it and hopes to expand more.

On his part, the Founder and General Managing Director of Interswitch Group, Mr Mitchell Elegbe, said that Verve had laid down the foundation and is currently being issued in over 20 countries on the continent

He noted that the company had a market share of 95 percent in Gambia and was similarly making name in Kenya and other countries.

According to Mr Elegbe, Verve had also gone global with its launch in New York and is accepted in over 185 countries in the world.

Business Post reports that at the media parley, which featured a panel discussion moderated by Mr Ogbalu III, Verve noted that it was at driving for more financial inclusion in line with the policies on the Central Bank of Nigeria while making electronic payments accessible and affordable, and also ensuring the drive for the acceptance of electronic payments in a cash driven economy.

There was also a deliberation on the disruption of telcos in offering financial services. The event also featured the launch and test of the Verve Life Application.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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