This company is adding more than just a little sparkle to Africa.
Sparkle is an online platform using technology to build a community of retailers in Nigeria.
Face2Face Africa reports the company’s founder, Uzoma Dozie, is on a mission to build a retail market throughout not only Nigeria but the entire continent of Africa.
Launched in 2019, Sparkle employs artificial intelligence to help users make good business decisions. It also allows entrepreneurs to reach out to those in the informal economy with the main goal of bringing them into the formal economy to ensure financial inclusion all through the use of their mobile phones.
According to Dozie, the platform is neither considered a bank nor a fintech platform in the traditional sense despite the fact that it provides financial services through technology.
“Why? Because we know that our customers are on mobile — they are digital natives and digital aliens,” said Dozie in an interview with Forbes. “They are building their e-commerce sites on their mobile phones, they are connecting with their customers (current and potential] on social, via mobile, they may already be trying to do their banking via their mobile phones. Mobile-first, second, third. So we have built Sparkle as a wrap-around to service their business requirements.”
Services provided by Sparkle include analytics, flexible payments, and savings via its Android and iOS mobile applications. The platform allows users to track daily, weekly, and monthly spending patterns with a detailed breakdown according to category.
Prior to becoming a founder, Dozie was the last Group Managing Director of Diamond Bank in Nigeria. There, he oversaw the growth of the Retail Banking leg of Diamond Bank to 18 million customers and helped to supervise the successful merger with Access Bank in 2019, making the institution Africa’s largest bank with 29 million customers, according to Forbes
“It’s an exciting time for retail in Nigeria, and Sparkle is amassing a tribe of like-minded people, self-starters, and problem solvers who are dedicated to using their talents to power the digital transformation of the financial industry. It is by no means a quick-fix solution, but we are committed to solving the unique and complex, changing needs of the Nigerian market,” continued Dozie.
Dozie has always been fascinated by technology and how it can be used to promote change and inclusivity in the business and finance sector.
Currently, according to its website, Sparkle has seen over $16 million in transaction value and surpassed 20,000 customers.