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Kenyan e-commerce startup Nuzo partners with IDEO to boost economic development in Africa using blockchain

Kenyan Web3 and e-commerce startup Nuzo has partnered with IDEO to boost customer loyalty and economic development in Africa while using blockchain.

By Anna B Kiwanuka

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Kenyan Web3 startup Nuzo, is revolutionizing client retention and reducing payment costs for small and micro-retailers in Africa using blockchain. The company is launching this through its partnership with IDEO Last Mile Money, a global collaborative network focused on connecting underserved communities to the digital economy. 

Furthermore, according to its statement, Nuzo hopes to further develop its financial service products to offer savings and credit services to Nuzo retailers through this partnership.

Nuzo Founder Charles Nichols stated, “Nuzo is providing a way for small and micro-retailers to offer their customers rewards and incentives, which helps to improve customer retention by up to 35% and increase sales by up to 200%.”

He added, “In addition, by using the Celo blockchain, we are able to reduce the costs of payments for retailers by up to 90% compared to mobile money payment services like M-Pesa, which helps retailers improve their profitability and competitiveness.”

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According to Nichols, Nuzo’s technology is not just benefiting retailers. It is also helping to increase financial inclusion in Africa. He further pointed out that according to the World Bank, only 33% of adults in Africa have an account at a formal financial institution. This lack of access to financial services makes it difficult for people to save money, access credit, and engage in financial transactions. By using the Celo blockchain for loyalty points, Nuzo is providing people with an alternative way to access financial services, which could help to increase financial inclusion in Africa. 

“Our goal is to onboard the next billion in Africa into the financial system using web3 technologies. By providing people with an easy and convenient way to access financial services, we believe that we can help to drive economic growth and development on the continent,” Nichols noted.

Additionally, Nuzo’s technology helps African women and unemployed young people. Numerous young people and women across the continent confront obstacles to economic engagement, such as a lack of access to financial services, education, and training. Nuzo aids in raising the earnings and enhancing the economic prospects of these groups by giving them new chances to accrue rewards points and use financial services.

Commenting on this Nichols stated, “Our technology is particularly beneficial for women and young people who are looking for ways to increase their incomes and improve their financial situation. By providing them with new opportunities to earn rewards and access financial services, we are helping to empower these groups and support their economic development.”

Nuzo’s technology is gaining traction in Kenya, with over 2,500 retailers already participating in the program. The company plans to expand its operations to other countries in Africa and plans to begin fundraising next year.


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