Visa has opened a new innovation studio in Nairobi. The studio is Visa’s first one in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).
The facility will serve the sub-Saharan Africa region and joins a network of innovation centers operated by Visa since 2016, in cities including Dubai, Singapore and San Francisco.
Senior Vice President & Head of Visa in Sub-Saharan Africa, Aida Diarra said that the studio aims to develop solutions to problems unique to Africa.
“Sub-Saharan Africa is a fast-growing region with a tech-savvy population. As we continue to grow digital payments adoption in the region, our aspiration is to deepen our collaboration with clients and partners in developing solutions that are designed around the unique needs of Africa,” said iarra.
Businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa have been leading the way in introducing new methods of paying, and being paid, by harnessing innovative technologies.
Ideas to expand the growth of emerging payment areas such as Tap to Phone and Pay on Delivery will be explored at the Innovation Studio alongside the ongoing development of cutting-edge smarter payment solutions that leverage blockchain, Internet of Things, Virtual Reality and biometrics.
“We are confident that the innovation studio will continue that legacy and cement Sub-Saharan Africa’s position as a leader in creating out of the box solutions to deal with our most pressing challenges as a region,” said Diarra.
The studio will help Visa clients and partners from across the continent extend their service offerings.
Visa’s Innovation Centers have been instrumental in the conceptualization and implementation of new business ideas and platforms around the globe.
Several Sub-Saharan Africa companies have already leveraged Visa’s innovation centre capabilities. They include Paga ; who collaborated with Visa to co-create a platform that offers tools to small businesses; and Safaricom on a solution to enable 24 million M-PESA users to transact at Visa merchant locations, and 150,000 M-PESA merchants to accept Visa card payments.