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FinTech

Airtel launches Africa developer portal

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Airtel Money has launched the Airtel Africa Developer Portal which will let businesses and app developers integrate remote payments with Airtel Money wallets.

The portal, which uses several open APIs and solutions, aims to provide greater ease of access for Airtel Money services across multiple business sectors and regions across the continent.

Airtel said that over 400 businesses have actively started using the service in its pilot phase across Airtel Africa's 14 markets.

The upgraded version is now officially live and being used across multiple business sectors, such as e-commerce, pay-as-you-go solar, cross-border remittances, insurance, government services, healthcare, agricultural technology companies, crowdfunding, ride-hailing, savings and credit cooperatives.

A subsidiary of the Indian group Bharti Airtel, Airtel Africa has about 122.7 million customers across Africa and 23.9 million mobile money users.

Airtel Africa is seeing success in its mobile financial services in Africa, with plans to spin off and list the financial services unit within four years.

The telco saw mobile money revenue jump 42% to $259 million for the six months ended September 30, 2021, while overall revenue increased 25.2% to $2.27 billion with double-digit growth across all its Africa regions.

The Developer Portal was created by Airtel Africa's bespoke engineering hub – Airtel Africa Digital Labs – which builds technology platforms and digital products to develop cutting-edge solutions for Airtel Africa's customers.

The platform has some similarities with MTN's API marketplace, Chenosis, which launched last year.

Airtel's platform was created especially for merchants and e-commerce businesses to create and integrate into Airtel Money's fast-growing library of open APIs which allow merchants to both collect Airtel Money payments and disburse into Airtel Money wallets.

An API, or application programming interface, is a software intermediary which essentially allows two applications to talk to each other.

"The new Airtel Africa Developer Portal with our fintech Open APIs will enable a wide range of businesses to quickly and easily integrate with Airtel Money for digital payments," Airtel Mobile Commerce BV CEO, Vimal Kumar Ambat, said in a statement.

"The Portal has a vast range of possibilities and will make a positive impact to multiple businesses, whether they require to collect payments from Airtel Money customers or they need to disburse payments to beneficiaries. The Portal further contributes to Airtel Africa's vision of bridging the digital divide, increasing financial inclusion and helping to transform the lives of Airtel Africa customers."

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*Top image source: jbdodane on Flickr CC 2.0

— The Staff, Connecting Africa

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