NALA Enters the UK Market, Powered by Modulr
- 18.02.2021 01:45 pm
This will enable the Accel backed FinTech to launch an array of financial services, including payments from the UK to East Africa. Over 70% of payments to Africa are still sent in cash using over the counter services. Many of these services have been suspended or limited due to coronavirus restrictions, leaving people with pricey, unreliable or hard to access alternatives. Combined with the increasing trend for digital first financial services (over 85% of financial institutions now provide some sort of digital account) NALA believes it’s the perfect time to launch an app tailored specifically to the needs of the African diaspora community.
David Sica, Partner at leading venture capital firm NYCA Partners, who are also investors in NALA commented: “I know the team at NALA have always harboured ambitions to make an impact on a global scale. The success they have had in East Africa sets a strong foundation for the change they want to drive within African diaspora communities in the UK and beyond.”
Building on the success of its personal finance app, which is used by over 250,000 users across Tanzania, NALA has ambitions to increase economic opportunity for Africans globally through remittances. Harnessing the power of the Modulr platform, NALA is eliminating process inefficiencies and ensuring the way its users make payments is a secure, reliable and frictionless experience.
NALA’s CEO Benjamin Fernandes explains: “We want to use remittances as a foundation for new layers of payments services for the African diaspora and their loved ones back home. There are many companies that claim to be “startup friendly”, but with Modulr this was actually the case. When searching for the right partner, we came across a number of financial institutions who either didn’t have the adequate API integrations or institutions who had the technical capabilities, but couldn’t provide regulatory sponsorship - Modulr has provided us with both. We are excited to move forward with Modulr’s support to increase economic opportunity for Africans across the globe.”
It was similar frustrations with payments inefficiencies that inspired Modulr to build the efficient, reliable and robust payments platform that underpins the innovative NALA solution today.
Nick Adams, Chief Customer Officer at Modulr commented: “When we first met the NALA team, we were blown away by their resolve to lower the economic barriers diaspora communities face. This only rang all too true with us at Modulr, as we eliminate the hidden inefficiencies of traditional banking and connect businesses directly into the economy.”
Modulr is one of the few non-bank payment service providers to become a directly connected participant of the UK’s Faster Payments Scheme, and it holds an account at the Bank of England so that funds are settled directly and held securely; providing reliability for NALA and security for its customers, who have the assurance of knowing their money is safeguarded. This provides NALA with the reliability and scalability it needs to accomplish its mission.
NALA will be rolling out their beta offering gradually from February 2021 for UK-based customers sending money to Kenya and Uganda. People can sign up for early access at www.iwantnala.com. The app will be available for customers sending to Tanzania shortly after.