Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, the vice president of Nigeria, and Mr. Godwin Obaseki, the governor of Edo State, among others, have praised Interswitch for its crucial contribution to the development and growth of Nigeria’s payment system over the past 20 years.
Top government officials have praised Interswitch, a business that specializes in integrated payments and digital commerce, as it completes its 20th anniversary festivities in Lagos.
“It’s incredible that what began as a noble notion, has in just two decades, become something of an icon of technology and creativity, literally pioneering Africa’s ongoing fintech revolution,” Osinbajo said in his goodwill message, which was televised during the ceremony.
“In 2002, only 569 million people were connected to the Internet worldwide, and at that time, Nigeria had less than 200,000 people with Internet access. It is therefore a testament to the quality of the talent and courage of the founders of Interswitch that they saw the future clearly and predicted the potentials of a nascent technology for scale and application.”
Obaseki, who was present to commemorate the achievement, praised Interswitch for serving as a shining example of what can be accomplished in Nigeria and congratulated the organization on reaching the milestone.
In order to add pomp and ceremony to the celebrations, members of the Interswitch Board of Directors, led by Board Chairman and Lord Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Ken Olisa OBE, were also present.
The anniversary celebration, which began in August 2022 with the launch of a campaign with the theme “Never Stop,” has highlighted Interswitch’s innovative achievements in the digital payment ecosystem, creating products and solutions that have, for 20 years, continued to drive prosperity across Africa.
Mitchell Elegbe, the company’s founder and group managing director, provided more details about the 20-year history of the fintech industry and its prospects.
He stated: “Two decades ago, we wondered what singular problem we could solve that would automatically solve other problems. We identified the payment problem and set out to solve it, making a bold move to make commerce easy and trade blossom naturally by eliminating the mystery associated with cash, and the stigma associated with not having it.”
“We ensured that cash was available in the exact time and quantity required, and transferrable electronically. We established a new paradigm, dethroning cash and enthroning commerce and connections. 20 years after, the Central Bank of Nigeria is leading Nigeria towards a fully cashless economy, layered on the work we began two decades ago,” he stated.
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