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Ethiopia’s Awash Bank partners Mastercard to launch international prepaid cards



Ethiopia’s leading private financial institution, Awash Bank S.C, has partnered with global payments company, Mastercard, to launch the Awash international prepaid cards.

Yohannes Merga, Senior Chief, Marketing Officer for Awash Bank, who announced the partnership on Thursday, said the launching of the Mastercard-branded international prepaid plastic card “marks a significant milestone in Ethiopia’s card business, as the cards enable customers and merchants to make and receive payments online from anywhere in the world.”

He added that the plastic card would offer added flexibility and convenience to customers as it was enabled to make contact or contactless transactions on ATMs and POS machines.

“This innovative offering is a testament to Awash Bank’s commitment to delivering convenient and secure financial solutions to our customers,” said Merga.

“Awash Mastercard empowers travelers with the freedom to manage their finances seamlessly while exploring the world.

“Along with the card, the bank will also introduce Mastercard’s Payment Gateway Services (MPGS) which will diversify and expand Awash Bank’s service offering.

“Mastercard’s Payment Gateway allows local merchants that have mobile applications or websites to integrate with it and accept international payments online. Customers from all over the world can place online orders and reservations and pay merchants that are integrated with MPGS using their cards.

Also speaking in the partnership, Shehryar Ali, Senior Vice President and Country Manager for East Africa and Indian Ocean Islands at Mastercard, said:

“This collaboration with Awash Bank is driving our commitment as Mastercard to enable financial inclusion across Africa.

“Our technological advancements in the payments landscape, enable consumers to be connected to endless possibilities, when transacting, in a safe, secure, and simple manner, which places power and convenience in their hands.”


Nigeria’s MAX partners Ghana’s Kofa in e-bike financing deal



Nigeria’s electric vehicle solutions provider, MAX, has announced striking a partnership deal with Ghana’s innovator in energy networks, Kofa, that will see MAX offering financing options for over 2,000 revolutionary TailG Jidi bikes.

The bikes which are developed by Kofa in conjunction with TailG, a Chinese manufacturer, were launched in October last year and has been a big hit in the West African country.

A statement by MAX on Thursday, stated that the partnership marks a significant milestone in making green transportation more accessible in Africa.

“Max’s financing options for the motorbikes will enable more individuals and businesses to adopt eco-friendly transportation, aligning with both companies’ vision of a sustainable future,” it said.

“This collaboration between MAX and Kofa is a step towards a greener, more sustainable Africa.

“This partnership is poised to accelerate the transition to green energy and sustainable transportation in Africa,” the company said.

“The coming together of the two democratises access to vehicle ownership and electric mobility across Africa through a tech-driven platform that offers a spectrum of services, including subscription-based vehicle financing,cutting-edge electric vehicle options, and comprehensive support services.

“Kofa, meanwhile, is focused on creating affordable, sustainable, and customer-driven electricity networks, starting with electric motorcycles.

“The startup partnered TailG Group, a leading electric vehicle brand from China, to launch the Jidi electric motorcycle last October, and subsequently announced the planned launch of its second-generation Kore 2 Swap & Go network,” it added.

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African Guarantee Fund partners Nordic Development Fund to launch green finance in Nigeria



The African Guarantee Fund (AGF) has teamed up with the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) to launch a green finance fund to tackle climate challenges in Nigeria.

The fund which was launched on Tuesday at the 9th Edition of the Green Finance Conference with the theme “The Role of Africa’s Private Sector in The Paris Agreement on Climate Change,” brought together representatives of the Nigerian government, senior executives of financial institutions, key regulatory-policy stakeholders, and Green SMEs to discuss green synergies.

According to the organisers of the event, the Green Finance Conference provided a platform for all stakeholders to “dialogue and showcase the many advantages that Green SMEs can contribute to the economy of Nigeria, while strengthening their understanding of AGF’s Green Guarantee Facility and how it enables banks on-lend to green and climate-smart projects.”

AGF Group Chief Executive Officer, Jules Ngankam, who delivered a keynote address, emphasized that the Green Finance Conference is a crucial response to the challenges posed by climate change within a framework of National Determined Contributions (NDC) with a focus on providing enhanced expertise to Africa while proposing practical solutions to addressing financing for smaller and medium-sized enterprises committed to green growth and climate-resilient development.

“Our aim is to support the banks to improve, increase or develop their green portfolios. Through the combination of our Green Guarantee and Capacity Development support, we are able to bridge the knowledge gap between both financial institutions and their customers,” he said.

“This is not only for the SMEs to understand how the lending process works, but also for the financial experts to learn how they can provide solutions tailored to suit the needs of the SMEs,” Jules said.

Managing Director of NDF, Satu Santala, who also spoke at the conference, said:

“We are committed to financing green and inclusive low-carbon and climate resilient growth of African economies to improve the livelihood of communities.

“Partnerships are at the core of NDF’s approach to climate finance and the African private sector plays a pivotal role in climate action and creating employment.”

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