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Visa pledges $1bn towards Africa’s digital acceleration

Staff Writer
By Staff Writer, ITWeb
Johannesburg, 15 Dec 2022

Global tech payments firm Visa has pledged to invest $1 billion in Africa over the next five years.

The company made the announcement at the ongoing US-Africa Business Forum, alongside the US-Africa Leaders’ Summit in Washington, DC.

Visa has 10 offices across Africa, from which it supports payments in all 54 countries.

In a statement, the financial services provider says the pledge is to scale its African operations, deploy new innovative technologies and deepen collaboration with partners across the continent.

In addition, the expanded investments will help it enable greater access to digital payments as an entry point for formal financial services for individuals and merchants.

Alfred F Kelly Jr, Visa chairman and CEO, indicates the investments will focus on strengthening the payment ecosystem, supporting digitisation of economies, and investing in upskilling, talent development and capacity-building.

“Visa has been investing in Africa for several decades to grow a truly local business, and today our commitment to the continent remains as firm and unwavering as ever,” says Kelly Jr.

“Every day, Visa supports digital commerce and money movement in every country across the continent, and Africa remains central to Visa’s long-term growth plans.

“We look forward to continuing to work closely with our partners to advance the financial ecosystem, accelerate digitisation and build resilient, innovative and inclusive economies that will create shared opportunity and further spur Africa’s digital economy.”

With an estimated 500 million people in Africa without access to formal financial services, the company notes the investments will also be used to facilitate additional opportunities to expand financial inclusion.

“Africais experiencing an unprecedented digital acceleration, with a growing number ofconsumers, merchants and businesses realising the benefits of secure andconvenient digital payments to fuel commerce and money movement,” states AidaDiarra, senior VP for Visa Sub-Saharan Africa.

“Over the past year, Visa has continued growing our investment in Africa, through new offices, new innovations and solutions, and programmes that are directly supporting financial inclusion. The investment pledge outlines our long-term commitment to Africa and the work we will do to help advance the financial ecosystem.”

“Expanding financial inclusion is critical to long-term economic prosperity, and we are proud to have worked with financial and public sector partners to launch new initiatives such as She’s Next,” adds Leila Serhan, senior VP for Visa in North Africa Levant countries and Pakistan.

“We look forward to continuing to support programmes that advance inclusion and prosperity, while introducing new innovations designed for consumers and businesses across Africa.”

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