I am ultra thrilled to announce that, last week, March 25, my Africa’s ethical neobank (in the making) for the low-income communities, Relieva Africa, has been finally selected for yet another audacious business support program, this time from African Development Bank (AfDB).
Relieva became one of the top 40 applicants selected for the startup MSMEs category for the Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Incubator program of Africa Development Bank as part of her Youth and Entrepreneurship centric Multi-Donor Trust Fund (YEI MDTF) initiated by Africa’s only Development Bank, implemented by the African Guarantee Fund (AGF) and facilitated by FRAGG Investment Management Ltd for the Nigerian Cohort.
The African Development Bank’s Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund support Africa’s entrepreneurship and agripreneurship ecosystems. Launched in November 2017, the Fund promotes the creation of sustainable jobs for young Africans by equipping youth and women-led start-ups as well as micro, small and medium enterprises with the skills, financial support, and enabling environments to run bankable businesses. It aims to fund enterprise support and access to finance, and support studies and reforms that foster the growth of innovative startups created and led by African youth.
The Trust Fund activities include business development services to enterprise support organizations such as incubators, accelerators, funds, and other networks that work with youth-led start-ups and Micro, Small & Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) to strengthen capacity and improve access to financial services. Interestingly, FRAGG’s investment mission and vision are also perfectly aligned with the mission and vision of Relieva which is technology and impact (rural, women, and youth) driven.
With this opportunity and anticipated business development support, mentorship, and investment facilitation from implementing and facilitating partners, African Guarantee Fund and FRAGG Investment Management Ltd, starting from April 20, Relieva is now closer to full commercialization to achieve her vision to be the go-to non-interest financial technology company with most inclusive and impactful products and services that banished poverty and enable socio-economic prosperity for all.
Dubbed Africa’s ethical neobank for the low-income communities, Relieva Africa is a tech-enabled ethical microfinance startup that allows financially underserved yet economically productive people and micro-businesses in rural and urban communities to access convenient, affordable, and efficient financial services, starting with microloan and savings – for improved financial well-being.
The business targets over 90/350 million unbanked and underbanked adults and 41/135 million MSME in Nigeria/Africa starting with micro-enterprises/individuals and operating from Abeokuta, the state capital of Ogun State. It recently completed validation of the business with about 3 million naira microloan transaction volume with a community/small group of micro traders as early adopters in Kobape-Abeokuta environ – impacted about 150 people directly with over 150% improvement in household income.
Relieva was started in September 2020 as an offshoot of FarmworkerzApp, a farm worker outsourcing service I founded and ran for about 3 years. During the time, one of our top frequent challenges was the difficulties of farm workers (which we normally connected to commercial farmers) not able to receive their wages on time after completing jobs due to a lack of personal bank accounts. This further led to using my venture design and social innovation acumen to analyze and observed the unmet financial needs of people and micro-businesses in our communities of service under 3 states of Ogun, Oyo, and Lagos of Nigeria which translated to a lack of access to suitable financial services that is better and completely inclusive.
ABOUT AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK GROUP
AfDB Group’s overarching objective is to spur sustainable economic development and social progress in its regional member countries (RMCs), thus contributing to poverty reduction. AfDB operates a series of multi-donor trust funds for different projects as one of her ways of achieving her objective and Youth Entrepreneurship Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund (YEI MDTF) is one of them under its Jobs for Youth in Africa (JfYA) Strategy (2016-2025) launched at its Annual Meetings in May 2016 in Lusaka, Zambia.
YEI MDTF also has several projects under it and this particular one is under Increasing Access to Finance for Youth-led Micro and Small Businesses in Five Countries – Ghana, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Togo, and Mali.
ABOUT AFRICAN GUARANTEE FUND
AGF was established in 2011 by the Government of Denmark (represented by DANIDA), the Government of Spain (represented by AECID) and the African Development Bank (AFDB), with a mandate of facilitating access to finance for SMEs to enable them fully play their role of driving the growth of African economies.
AGF is an implementing partner of the Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund and will lead on capacity development training to address issues affecting youth-led businesses with a key focus on formalization and preparedness to access financing.
ABOUT FRAGG INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT LTD
An impact investment management and advisory company specializing in the mobilization and management of funds targeting investments in the impact and climate domains. FRAGG works with financial institutions, impact projects, businesses and other actors in the impact and climate finance domains in Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean to raise new capital and support business growth. Thus engaged to provide training and mentorship services for the Nigeria cohort of YEI MDTF.
#RelievaPressRelease #RelievaAfrica #FintechForBoP
#RelievaXAfDB #RelievaXAGF #RelievaXFRAGG
Abdulmuhmin Opeyemi Aminu
Founder/Operations Lead,Relieva Africa