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Tarya Fintech Africa targets early expansion

Ghana , 29 Jan 2020

Tarya Fintech Africa targets early expansion

Kweku Afful was born and raised in Ghana, but as a young adult moved to the UK to study, and subsequently worked as a financial analyst in risk management for FM Global.

After more than ten years, he decided it was time to return to his community, founding Link Exchange, a microfinance company with the key objective of providing loans and investment services to consumers and SMEs. Then, in 2018, Kweku joined forces with the Israel-based Tarya Holding Group, becoming chief executive officer of Tarya Fintech Africa.

Founded in 2014, Tarya Holding Group provides businesses and retailers a one-stop solution that enables them to provide financial services directly to their customers.

After establishing its neobanking solution in Israel, Tarya expanded to Ghana in 2018 with the goal of serving unbanked populations. Through mobile technology and a P2P business model, Tarya Fintech provides financial services to the largely unbanked population.

"At the moment, we are focusing on offering affordable loans to Ghanian cocoa farmers," said Afful.

Currently, about 70% of the population in Ghana is unbanked. As a result, businesses that wish to receive financial services are only offered the opportunity at extremely high interest rates, anywhere from 24-72% per annum on loans.

Afful added, "Due to the penetration of the mobile market, Tarya is able to leverage this technological infrastructure to provide financial inclusion for those who did not have access in the past. We are aiming to build smart ecosystems where peer-to-peer credit scoring will help drive down the very high interest. Today, the competition is mostly comprised of banks and alternative financial institutions, which offer expensive, one-size-fits-all lending products to certain segments of customers."

Tarya Holding Group is currently in the process of raising US$20-million in a Series B round and African growth is planned, with Nigeria the next target. Afful said market adoption has been one of his biggest challenges, but patience is paying off.

"The Fintech landscape is on the cusp of a very exciting period, slowly becoming the fourth technological stack – where businesses can use technology to develop completely new business models and technology," he said.

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