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Nigeria’s Earnipay launched on-demand salary access platform. 2 other stories and a trivia



This line-up of stories will help you discover the latest happenings around the tech world today.

1. Nigeria’s Earnipay launched on-demand salary access platform

Nigerian fintech startup, Earnipay, which provides flexible and on-demand salary access to income-earners, has completed a $4 million funding round.

Founded by Nonso Onwuzulike in 2019, Earnipay integrates employer payroll and Human Resources Management (HRM) systems to enable on-demand financing for employees to access their salary instantly without interest.

Its solution helps organisations improve employee engagement and productivity by relieving financial stress caused by eliminating the need for a salary advance or predatory payday loans with interest rates.

Onwuzulike initially established Earnipay to address the high attrition rate among waste collection staff at his recycling company.

Following the transition from a monthly payment schedule to a more flexible system, offering weekly or bi-weekly payments, productivity improved and employee retention increased.

He then surveyed 100 formal employees within his network to assess their financial needs and employer responses to those needs.

Onwuzulike said: “Initially, Earnipay was envisioned as a salary advance solution, akin to existing solutions in Nigeria, some of which were provided by traditional banks. However, when 90 percent of surveyed employees expressed a preference for flexible access to accrued salaries, Earnipay’s focus shifted accordingly.”

After beta testing and development since September 2021, Earnipay fully launched in January 2022 as a pioneer of on-demand pay in Nigeria, offering employees flexible access to their earned salaries at any point during the month.

He added: “By partnering with HR departments and business owners, Earnipay aimed to enhance employee benefits and address common payroll processing challenges, such as payment reconciliation and benefit distribution.

“Recognising that business also faced financial shortfalls and long wait times between customer payments, Earnipay expanded its scope to provide comprehensive business solutions, addressing financial, people operations, and employee benefits challenges.”

Earnipay’s product suite is designed to boost employee satisfaction, productivity, retention, and overall business growth. Aside from on-demand pay, offerings include financing, people operations solutions, and financial wellness solutions.

The startup which closed a seed round of $4 million to scale its offering in February last year has grown slower than expected.

“Since on-demand pay was a relatively new concept in Nigeria, and Earnipay was a “pioneer in the space.

“Nigerian employees were accustomed to receiving their salaries at the end of the month, despite the clear advantages of having access to their earnings at any time for bill payments, savings, and more. To facilitate a shift in mindset, we focused on educating the market.

“Our dedicated team, which includes sales, customer experience, product, engineering, and marketing professionals, has worked tirelessly to develop a reliable product that employees can trust. As a result, we now have a growing pipeline of businesses that we are onboarding,” he stated.

Earnipay presently serves the Nigerian market in 36 states.

TECH TRIVIA: Which of the following units of measurement is the largest?

A. Megahertz

B. Kilohertz

C. Gigahertz

D. Hertz

Answer: see end of post

2. Baidu set to launch generative AI model

Chinese search engine giant, Baidu, has announced its intention to launch a new product, Ernie 3.5, a generative AI large-language model that will power Baidu’s ChatGPT-like app.

The company’s Chief Executive Officer, Robin Li,, who made the announcement at the Zhongguancun Forum on Friday, said the plan was to showcase the best of China through the new product.

Ripples Nigeria gathered that the Zhongguancun Forum is one of the biggest technology events in China with the country’s big wigs often in attendance.

Ernie Bot and other products powered by the company’s generative AI large-language model have remained in trial mode with a number of companies and users invited to test the products and provide feedback.

3. Saudi’s Wosul closes $3.2m seed round to scale operations

Saudi Arabia-based fintech, Wosul Payments, has closed a $3.2 million seed round led by Khalab’s company.

A group of investors in fintech and retail participated in the seed round.

Wosul was founded in 2020 by Fahd Alghamdi as a cloud-based Point of Sale (PoS) system that enables merchants to accept digital transactions online or in-store.

With the new investment, the startup looks to scale its operations across its home market by expanding its pool of merchants.

Alghamdi said this tour included a variety of angel investors in the retail and fintech sectors.

He described the seed round as a great achievement for the Wosul company.

Trivia Answer: Gigahertz

One gigahertz is equal to 1,000 megahertz (MHz) or 1,000,000,000 Hz. It is commonly used to measure computer processing speeds. For many years, computer CPU speeds were measured in megahertz, but after personal computers eclipsed the 1,000 Mhz mark around the year 2000, gigahertz became the standard measurement unit.

After all, it is easier to say “2.4 Gigahertz” than “2,400 Megahertz.”

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