Ripple is partnering with Ghanaian fintech company Waya to support real-time payments across Africa
Ghana's Waya Money appears to have partnered with Ripple to enable millions of Africans to make cross-border payments when considering a recent Waya Money website update.
A “bus is faster” than bank transfers
Based in Ghana's hip Accra region, Waya is a digital “challenger” for banks committed to the financial integration of Africa, a region that is falling victim to corrupt financial practices and under-funded by the vast population.
Ripple and other companies helping Waya make payments and transfers in Africa simple and instant @ Ripple @MatthewLINY https://t.co/g7jRpAHG0M
– Leonidas Hadjiloizou (@LeoHadjiloizou) May 18, 2020
Waya has teamed up with the blockchain-based Ripple payment protocol to presumably solve such widespread problems:
At the time of writing, no further details of the partnership are available online, such as those that affect the use of XRP for cross-border payments or the expansion of the RippleNet platform.
If the comments from a local blog are trusted, the importance of immediate broadcasts to the African region is immense. The blog claims that transferring money between Togo and Ghana, two African countries, is cheaper and faster if the parties concerned travel across the border by bus than if they rely on banks.
Such problems hamper “intercontinental trade” across Africa, but the entry of actors like Waya is trying to solve the problem. The company even promises a “30 minutes” – Policy where money will be returned to the sender's account if transactions are not settled within the timeframe.
Waya is currently active in three African countries: Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria. More are in preparation, including South Africa, Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast. Interestingly, the project also lists Stellar (XLM) as a partner.
Africa's bet on crypto
In Africa, a huge, resource-rich continent suffering from poor financial infrastructure and a banking system, blockchain and cryptocurrencies have only been introduced sporadically. Non-blockchain protocols like M-Pesa dominate micropayments on the continent.
Meanwhile, XRP continues to be criticized by several parties. Ripple, the parent company of the cryptocurrency, has long claimed that there is a “difference” between XRP and the larger operations of Ripple Labs, which means the two efforts are not related.
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