BrandArena: Mastercard Hosts 2024 Fintech Forum to Drive Collaboration and Innovation in Nigeria's Financial Technology Ecosystem

Saturday 23 March 2024

Mastercard Hosts 2024 Fintech Forum to Drive Collaboration and Innovation in Nigeria's Financial Technology Ecosystem

Mastercard on Wednesday, March 20th, reaffirmed its commitment to Nigeria's robust financial technology ecosystem by hosting the highly anticipated 2024 Fintech Forum. The event demonstrated the top payments technology company's continuous commitment to supporting growth and innovation in the fintech sector.

The forum brought together key stakeholders from across the fintech community, including representatives from commercial banks, microfinance banks, processors, investors, regulators, and government agencies, to engage in in-depth discussions about the most recent developments and trends shaping Nigeria's fintech landscape. It also highlighted Mastercard's initiatives to promote collaboration and provide possibilities for progression within the sector.

Fintech firms have emerged as pivotal players in revolutionizing various sectors, offering locally relevant solutions and fostering financial inclusion. The forum highlighted the transformative impact of these companies, emphasizing their role in fostering innovative partnerships between financial institutions, governments, merchants, and SMEs.

Notably, Nigeria's fintech sector has experienced exponential growth, with investments exceeding $1 billion over the past two years alone. This substantial influx of capital underscores the industry's potential and positions Nigeria as a significant player in the global fintech arena, with investments in the region accounting for more than one-third of total African fintech investments since July 2021.

"Mastercard’s Fintech Forum has become an avenue to advance discussions on the development of the industry in Nigeria, and we are proud to be the vehicles of this change. The discussions this year underscored the pivotal role of collaboration and innovation in shaping the future of Nigeria’s fintech landscape. Mastercard remains unwavering in our commitment to power this positive change, offer support, and lead the evolution of the industry," said Folasade Femi-Lawal, the Country Manager and Area Business Head for West Africa at Mastercard.
The event also featured a fireside chat titled “Mastercard’s Role in Fintech Ecosystem Collaboration”. During this discussion, Dimitrios Dosis, President of Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EEMEA) at Mastercard, said: “Fintechs continue to stand as the trailblazers, pushing boundaries and reshaping industries. Their penchant for innovation is not just transformative, it is integral to the very fabric of our industry and the broader economy. Mastercard, as a driving force, is proud to champion the pivotal role of fintechs, recognizing their significance in fostering economic progress. As a leading technology provider, we will continue to innovate, and support and collaborate with them to drive locally relevant solutions and initiatives for maximized impact. We're committed to being the catalyst that propels the ecosystem forward, facilitating a future where technology empowers individuals, businesses, and economies to participate in the global economy.”
The fireside chat was followed by a panel session titled “Digitization and Its Role in Nigeria’s Economic Development”, during which speakers delved into digitization, its role in enhancing efficiency across all sectors, opportunities, and the importance of balancing innovation and inclusivity to maximize its impact on Nigeria's economic development. During the session, Nasir Yammama, Senior Special Assistant to the President, Innovation, said: “Nigeria’s digital transformation and ever-evolving fintech and banking landscape presents exciting possibilities. The ongoing innovation boom acts as the cornerstone for advancing digital public infrastructure, fostering financial inclusion, and propelling economic growth. As always, the government remains committed to creating an enabling environment and collaborating with key industry players to drive more impactful innovations and pave the way for a future where every individual and business can thrive in a digital-first global environment through well-informed, inclusive policies and initiatives.”
Mark Elliott, Division President, Mastercard Sub-Saharan Africa, closed the event and offered insights into the fintech landscape. He emphasised the importance of the fintech industry and highlighted the significance of inclusive innovation and collaboration in driving sustained economic development.
“Mastercard is providing fintechs with the tools, resources, and support they need to thrive in the ever-evolving digital economy. Whether it's through innovative solutions or strategic partnerships with key players in the industry, Mastercard has demonstrated its commitment to shaping the future of fintech and contributing to the growth and success of the broader ecosystem,” said Mark Elliott, Division President, Mastercard Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Fintech Forum not only celebrated the achievements and advancements in Nigeria's fintech sector, but also revealed a shared vision among industry leaders, which encompassed a future where strategic collaboration continues to be a driving force for positive change, innovation, and widespread financial inclusion, not only in Nigeria but on a global scale.

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