October 22, 2020, Lagos, Nigeria: Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA) has announced the winners of its recently concluded Fintech4wd Hackathon. The hackathon challenged software engineers to develop innovative solutions to help facilitate microenterprises’ access to financial services during the COVID-19 pandemic. With the introduction of these solutions into the market, we aim to improve the operations of MSMEs by providing avenues to raise needed working capital for their businesses and avenues for economic growth.
Following two evaluation rounds, the top 3 teams selected from the Hackathon are:
- First Place: Team Inclusion, comprised of Bright Mba, Precious Dike, and Derek Vinebo. The team won a cash prize of N2,000,000.
Team Inclusion developed a mobile wallet named Inclusion, which enables MSMEs to digitize cash and save by purchasing vouchers through USSD technology. Inclusion also offers access to loans based on savings history, which serves as an incentive to save.
- Second Place: Team Savannah, with Adebayo Olorunfemi, Adewumi Sunkanmi, and Aanuoluwa Babalola as members. The team won the sum of N1,500,000.
Team Savannah built a savings and financial advisory platform, Coin Planner, which enables individuals and MSMEs to manage their spending by helping them save from periodic earnings. Coin Planner also matches users with best-priced, pre-registered vendors to help users save more via discounted goods/services.
- Third Place: Team Locksley, which included Ife Makinde, Ilerioluwa Adeoye, Ezekiel Adeyinka, Bolarinwa Kazeem, and Sandra Ike. The team won the sum of N1,000,000.
Team Locksley built PakoCredit, a competitive lending marketplace with a real-time credit decision capability, which enables MSMEs access information on available loans, apply for loans, and generate credit scores via a USSD platform (*347*700#).
For the geopolitical zones’ award (best teams outside the top 3 from each geopolitical zone), Team EduPayfrom Oyo State (South West) consisting of Olutomiwa Olaoye and Abayomi Omiwale, and TeamStreet Cred from Abuja (North Central) which included Balogun Wahab, Olubusayo Amowe, Victor Akhilome, and Blessing Obimuonso, emerged victorious, receiving a prize of N200,000 per team.
A total of 13 teams (36 participants) were shortlisted for the Hackathon, with 11 viable products submitted. While the top 3 teams have been selected to go through an accelerator programme for further development, the other 8 teams will also receive continued support from EFInA. The hackathon was held on the Industry Sandbox platform developed by Financial Services Innovators (FSI), EFInA’s implementation partner. The sandbox provided participants with access to industry APIs on which to build their solutions. The solutions developed by the teams were reviewed by a panel of five judges with technical experience within the financial sector. Winners and runners-up were selected based on the product design, innovativeness, scalability into various regions in Nigeria, and presentation of their solutions.
The Fintech4wd Hackathon showcased Nigeria’s potential for developing homegrown solutions to promote economic recovery during these challenging times, and underscores EFInA’s commitment to supporting financial services innovation in Nigeria through its research, grant funding, capacity building and advocacy efforts.
EFInA’s recent Fintech Landscape and Impact Assessment research identified the potential for Fintech to contribute to the Digital Financial Services GDP uplift of $50bn by 2025, driven by increased productivity, capital and labor hours. However, this potential impact requires deliberate efforts to address the pressing needs that MSMEs and the low-income demographic have. EFInA will be supporting the development and implementation of the most promising Hackathon solutions to ensure the potential impact on MSMEs is delivered.
For more information on how EFInA promotes innovation in the Nigerian financial sector, please visit https://www.efina.org.ng/our-work/innovation/.
EFInA is a member of the Financial Sector Deepening Network, funded by UKAID to promote inclusive finance in Nigeria.