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African neobank Kuda arrives in the UK to streamline Nigerian remittances

CEO Babs Ogundeyi is on a mission to cut the cost of sending money to Africa.

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Babs Ogundeyi/Kuda.

Valued at over $500m, Nigerian neobank Kuda is today launching in the UK today as its second market in order to add remittances to its growing list of features.

The fintech is based in London but has only operated in Nigeria since its founding in 2016, where it also secured a banking licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria in 2019 to become the first mobile-only bank in the country.

Last year Kuda raised a $55m Series B funding round led by Valar Ventures and Target Global at a $500m valuation, funding which is helping it to expand its focus.

That includes today’s launch in the UK, where Kuda is launching on iOS, Android and the web, initially with only UK-to-Nigeria remittances, but with plans to expand to add full banking services for its UK customers.

“Africans in the UK are faced with barrier after barrier when it comes to financial services - from challenges setting up accounts to prohibitive and inconsistent fees on meaningful transfers,” said Kuda CEO and co-founder Babs Ogundeyi.

“They are forced to limit each transfer to a few hundred pounds to avoid losing money or face escalating exchange rates with bigger transfers.”

UK-based Nigerians currently pay an average of 8 per cent to send around £3bn from the UK back to Nigeria every year, while Kuda offers a flat £3 fee on payments up to £10,000.

The fintech says it could save Nigerians millions, not to mention all the other countries of Africa that suffer with similarly expensive payment rails that cost expats every year.

“Technology means the world is getting smaller but the incredible transformation in financial services hasn’t been inclusive. Kuda is changing that—initially for Nigerians, then all Africans in the UK and across the globe.”

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