Lipa Later, the fintech start-up which offers risk free payment options for consumers, is the second African start-up this year and one of 8 later-stage global start-ups that has been selected to participate in Mastercard’s Start Path program. The Start Path engagement platform provides curated access to Mastercard’s global ecosystem of partners and channels and a gateway to operational support, technology expertise and opportunity to secure strategic investment.
From 2014, Start Path has been working with later-stage startups with a key focus on those in fintech and commerce. The program offers operational support and technological expertise to address fintech needs and collaborate on solutions aimed at solving major challenges in payments, technology and financial inclusion today.
Adam Jones, Area Business Head Mastercard East Africa said: “At Mastercard, we actively search for start-ups like Lipa Later that are committed to long-term value creation. These strategic partnerships, particularly with regional fintechs, are important to foster local innovation and create maximum market impact for mastercard customers.”
Launched in 2016, Lipa Later provides a payment option that allows consumers unlimited access to products and services as they pay for them over time. It is designed to meet customer needs through the use of technology and innovation and its wide partnership network in East Africa.
Eric Muli, CEO and Co-founder of Lipa Later said: “We are excited about the future and the work that we are doing on the continent and we believe that the innovation that happens at Mastercard will help us get closer to our mission.”
According to a report published in 2019 by EY on fintechs, global adoption of fintech services has moved steadily upward from 16% in 2015, to 33% in 2017, to 64% in 2019. In Africa, a combination of favourable demographics, an under-represented banking sector and minimal financial infrastructure are promising for growth with consumer demand growing rapidly.
With the right amount of resources and support, the fintech sector will not only yield substantial returns but also provide significant benefits to the population by continuing to be a key driver of financial inclusion.