Contributed by Atoyebi Moses Tolulope
In mid June 2019, the busy streets of Lagos were filled with sights of riders in green outfits on green coloured bikes with the name Opay on their backs and on their bikes. Opay was thought to be just another ride hailing brand but there was more to it.
What was thought to be another ride hailing brand like Gokada was actually a fintech company that has a ride hailing service known as ORide along side other OFood; a food delivery service, OTrek; a tricycle hailing service, OCash; a quick loan service and other financial smart services.
This multi-service digital payment platform that as got the attention of virtually everyone in Nigeria was founded in 2018 after the purchase of PayCom Nigeria Limited by Opera Software which is the parent company of Opay. The Norwegian browser company is popularly known for Opera Mini, the second most subscribe to browser in Africa after Chrome owned by Google.
Opera’s operation in Africa in the fintech space is said to have started in Kenya as Oplay, a quick loan service. To start it’s operation in Nigeria, Opay raised the sum of $15 million USD to fund it’s operation.
This huge fund has allowed Opay to vigorously market it’s services traditionally and digitally. Their arrival into some industries by virtue of their multi-service strategy has upheaved competitors from their market. An instance is ORide, by offering ridiculously cheap services to ORide users, their competitors are hardly thriving and finding it hard to survive. It is rumoured to have even wooed riders and top officials from it’s rival ride hailing company Gokada.
Opay due to the saturation in Lagos State have now spread their tentacles to other parts of Nigeria and seem to be gaining ground fast. Opay is now a big competitor in the fintech industry in Nigeria and have certainly gained the attention of Paga, Nigeria’s number one digital payment platform who recently invested millions of dollars to increase its customer base.