LATEST TECH NEWS: Nigerian Fintech Okra secures $1M from foreign VC. 4 other things and a trivia you need to know today, April 27, 2020 | Ripples Nigeria
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LATEST TECH NEWS: Nigerian Fintech Okra secures $1M from foreign VC. 4 other things and a trivia you need to know today, April 27, 2020



These 5 latest stories from the tech space will keep you updated with trends today.

1. Nigerian payments app Bundle launches after securing $450k from VC

Nigerian payments app for cash and cryptocurrencies, Bundle, has announced its launch after reportedly securing $450,000 from global blockchain company Binance. According to Bundle’s business framework, the firm allows users to buy, sell, and store digital currencies. This launch will, therefore, see to how users deposit and withdraw digital currencies and local fiat starting with the Nigerian naira.

Speaking on funding, Binance, the VC firm, acknowledged that Bundle’s product vision is to evolve into a super-app with a native digital wallet that supports crypto and cash. This, according to the VC, will position Bundle as a firm with a product that is on its way to become an ultimate utility in everyday life for Africans and the world.

2. Nigerian Fintech Okra secures $1m investment from foreign VC

Nigerian Fintech platform, Okra, has secured a $1-million pre-seed investment from TLcom Capital, leading Nairobi and London based venture capital (VC) firm. Investment analysts have noted that the investment is a major breakthrough for the startup as it just launched operation in January since being founded in June, 2019. The funding is not surprising as its value proposition reads with market insights capable of yielding in the long term.

Okra, in its blueprint, aims to create a secure portal and process to exchange real-time financial information between customers, applications and banks. Since founded, it has developed the first API in Africa to retrieve real-time financial data from a bank account to any web or mobile app.

Tech Trivia:

Who invented the first working telephone?

A. Abraham Sounding
B. Abraham Bell
C. Alexander Sounding
D. Alexander Bell

Answer: See end of post.

3. GSMA opens £250k grant applications for innovators in Africa and Asia

The GSM Association (GSMA) on Monday, April 27, announced opening applications for its Innovation Fund for Mobile Internet Adoption and Digital Inclusion. The organisation, in a press release noted it was offering equity-free grants between £100 000 and £250 000 to any qualified innovator.

Read also: LATEST TECH NEWS: Apple counters hacking assertion from cybersecurity personnel. 4 other things and a trivia you need to know today, April 24, 2020

According to GSMA, the fund is aimed at supporting startups or small businesses based in Sub-Saharan Africa or Asia that are helping people get online for the first time using mobile internet.

The release added that GSMA will fund projects that focus on innovations that overcome a number of the barriers to mobile internet adoption including accessibility, affordability, digital skills and safety and security.

4. Facebook launches drop-in video chat rooms

Social networking site, Facebook, has launched a drop-in video chat room feature, a new development reviewers describe as Facebook co-opting some of the top video chat innovations like Zoom’s gallery view for large groups and Houseparty’s spontaneous hangouts.

The new feature, called Rooms, might usher in a new era of unplanned togetherness via video, turning Facebook into a universal utility networking platform. Following its launch on mobile and desktop in English speaking countries, users can start a video chat Room that friends can discover via a new section above the News Feed.

5. Finnish VC launches second round fund to back pre-seed startups

Finnish venture capital firm, Icebreaker, has launched a second fund to back pre-seed and seed stage startups. With a close of €50 million investment, Icebreaker has increased its fund up by €30M from the first round of €20M.

Explaining the source of its fund, Icebreaker revealed that most of its Limited Partners from past time have contributed to the new round, adding that the firm also recorded new signing of LPs who took interest to participate. According to an email from Icebreaker, “It’s great to see them take the same view as we are; things must go on and this is a great time to start building and investing in pre-seed-stage technology companies in Europe.”

Tech Trivia Answer: Alexander Bell

Alexander Graham Bell is often credited with being the inventor of the telephone since he was awarded the first successful patent. However, there were many other inventors such as Elisha Gray and Antonio Meucci who also developed a talking telegraph. Alexander Graham Bell made 1st sound transmission, June 2, 1875.

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