Orange Digital Ventures backs Nigerian start-up with US$1.5-m
Orange Digital Ventures (ODV) Africa has announced a US$1.5-million seed investment round in Youverify, a Lagos-based digital identity and address verification start-up.
In its statement, Orange Digital Ventures Africa said the start-up automates identity and background verification processes, primarily serving financial and telecommunication service providers.
Co-founded by CEO Gbenga Odegbami, Youverify aims to help companies automate the verification processes of different types of data treated separately - such as identity, academic background, home address, credit history, facial recognition, for example, while respecting the highest standards of regulation and data protection.
Youverify is the fifth company to join the portfolio of Orange group’s African investment initiative.
According to Orange Digital Ventures Africa, financial and mobile payment services continue to accelerate their development on the continent.
“Verification tasks remain complex and manual for major players, Fintech and large corporates and the rise of RegTech companies, such as Youverify, is key for the market in order to speed up and simplify these tasks,” the telecommunications firm stated.
The companies say the investment will help Youverify improve its technology and accelerate business development in Nigeria and the continent.
Said Odegbami, “This constitutes a unique opportunity for us to take further our ambition to simplify and secure our client’s internal processes, whether in the recruitment of staff, customer on-boarding etc. Our ambition is to be the leading African player in verifying people and companies’ identities by making data protection and security the core of our proposal. "
Grégoire de Padirac, Investment Manager at ODV, said, “Matters of security and access to financial or telecommunications services should never be at odds with each other. Telecom operators like Orange are at the forefront of these transformational challenges. We are proud to support Youverify, which intends to resolve this triple objective of fostering financial inclusion, strengthening security and preserving user rights over their data.”
According to the start-up, since its launch in 2018, it has performed over 300,000 customer registrations and verifications “for some of Nigeria's largest banks and financial companies.”