Nigerian fintech startup Grey has picked Kenya as its East African hub as it expands operations in the region.
Launched in 2021 by Idorenyin Obong and Femi Aghedo, who wanted to help Nigerians easily exchange to local currency and access the foreign currencies in their accounts, Grey offers an international money transfer service that enables its users to send and receive international payments without restrictions quickly. Its products include foreign bank accounts, instant currency exchange, and international money transfers.
The Y Combinator-backed fintech startup raised a US$2 million funding round last August, and is busy expanding. It has chosen Kenya as its East African hub, having already launched there and in Tanzania with over 300,000 users.
Obong said opening offices in Kenya would help the firm navigate its planned operations in other countries in the East African Community (EAC).
“Kenya’s diaspora remittance is very vibrant as remittance inflows to Kenya have increased tenfold in the last 15 years, reaching an all-time record of US$3.7 million. This phenomenal growth points to the importance of remittances as a source of foreign exchange to the country, equivalent to more than three per cent of Kenya’s GDP,” he said.
“More Kenyans are working remotely for companies abroad where payments tend to be tedious and expensive. Our solution allows African freelancers to have foreign accounts and seamlessly receive money worldwide and be globally competitive.”
Last year, Grey partnered with Cellulant as the company’s payments processor, powering its payouts to thousands of Grey’s customers, and Moringa School to increase awareness and empower digital nomads on financial literacy in collaboration with Safaricom, Antler and Nairobi Garage.
The company has also privately launched Grey Business, a borderless business banking platform for startups, where they can get instant international payments and currency conversions for their business. Companies can also open US bank accounts online with no minimum balance, monthly fees or hidden fees.