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June 10, 2022

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Good day , 

Victoria here,

How are you doing? It's another weekend, and I trust it'll be fun, especially for Nigerians. Why? Because June 12 is Democracy Day.

Democracy Day commemorates the day in 1999 when the military ceded power to an elected civilian government. It has been an annual tradition since the year 2000.

However, it hasn't always been celebrated on June 12 and was initially observed every May 29.

Plus, it’s in two days, and Monday has been declared a public holiday. So you have all three days to yourself. Please close that laptop and go outside and breathe some air.

Looking for something fun to do this evening? Don't look any further!

Techpoint Africa will be delighted to welcome you to its June Pitch Friday event, where current and potential founders share their ideas/products with an audience. It will take place at 43b Emina Crescent, Allen, Ikeja, at 5 p.m. WAT!

To attend, register here. See you there!

Today, I'll be discussing:

  • Emmanuel Njoku’s journey
  • Access Bank's plan to acquire Sidian Bank
  • GOMYCODE’s $8 million Series A

Unrelated, but help Techpoint Africa determine how much African tech workers earn by filling out this form or sharing it with your developer friends.


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Emmanuel Njoku’s journey to Blockchain stardom

This week's People in Emerging Tech episode reminds me of my childhood desire to write. My father is an avid reader; he loves books and has a small library full of them.

So, buying books for my siblings and me came naturally to him. Even though I didn't understand much of what I read as a child, I soldiered on, and at one point, I started reading the dictionary. It's just too bad I do not have a neurotypical brain.

However, it wasn't long before I began writing. Between JSS 1 and 2, I wrote Why Goats are Stubborn. (😂😂) It was inspired by one of the Lantern books I read, Whisker, the Brave Cat.

When one of my dad's friends, a writer and author, visited, he saw the manuscript and took it home to read. He returned it a few days later with glowing remarks, encouraging me to publish it.

I happily took it to my parents. But I was disappointed! Before I continue, let's discuss yesterday's People in Emerging Tech article.

In this week's episode, Bolu interviewed Emmanuel Njoku, CEO and Co-founder of Lazerpay, a crypto startup. His zeal and motivation stood out to me. Despite his parents' attempts to persuade him to study medicine or electrical engineering, he remained focused on his goal.

Emmanuel, who sees himself as the next Zuckerberg, is passionate about building and problem-solving. So, when he was in school, he couldn't understand why he should confine himself to the four walls of a university that seemed like child's play.

While his classmates worried about finishing with good grades, tests, homework, and fighting for the attendance sheet, he was unconcerned. And it wasn't long before he began skipping classes.

His father wasn't too happy with that, though, and seized his laptop. That alone could have persuaded him to give up, but he didn't.

In my case, while my father didn't seize my pen or stop buying books, his words struck me hard. And I stopped writing for a while.

But Emmanuel didn't; he rethought his strategy. To him, that was the time to prove everyone wrong. But how did he do it? Learn more here: “To me, my laptop was human.” – Lazerpay CEO, Njoku Emmanuel’s journey to blockchain stardom

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On Saturday, the 18th of June, 2022, renowned marketing and sales consultant, Tope Olofin, will be teaching you how to make your first sale on Instagram without spending ₦1 on Advertising. Register now.


Access Bank to acquire Sidian Bank

Nigerian commercial bank, Access Bank, is prepared to acquire Kenyan Sidian Bank, an SME and trade finance bank, by purchasing Centum Investments' stake in the bank for Ksh 4.3 billion ($36.7 million).

Supposedly, Centum has entered a binding agreement to sell its 83.4% stake in Sidian to Access bank. However, the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals in Nigeria and Kenya.

Currently, there are three Nigerian banks in Kenya: United Bank of Africa, Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO), and Access Bank.

According to James Mworia, Centum CEO, the acquisition will advance the company's vision of becoming Africa's leading investment channel. Also, it will strengthen Centum's track record of attracting foreign investors to Kenya and the region.

In February 2020, Access Bank acquired a 99.98% stake in Transnational Bank of Kenya for Ksh1.56 billion ($12.8 million) and rebranded it as Access Bank Kenya.

At the time, the former Access Bank CEO, Hibert Wigwe, said, “We are excited to have successfully entered into the Kenyan market. Kenya has been recognised as a market leader in mobile money transfers in the financial industry, and we believe that Access Bank can leverage the Kenyan model and replicate the same to achieve success across other African markets."

A mobile money play? Like most financial institutions in Kenya, both the Transnational Bank of Kenya (now Access Bank Kenya) and Sidian Bank allow transfers to and from an M-Pesa account (Kenya’s leading mobile money operator). They do not, however, offer mobile money services. 

Should they receive approval, Access Bank intends to merge Sidian Bank with Access Bank Kenya. A plan they believe could push the bank from its current Tier 3 status to Tier 2.


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GOMYCODE’s $8 million Series A

Yesterday, Thursday, June 9, 2022, GOMYCODE, a Tunisian edtech startup, announced that it had raised an $8 million Series A.

The round was led by Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund (CAIF) and Proparco, with participation from Wamda Capital and other unknown investors.

Launched by Yahya Bouhlel (CEO) in 2017, the company provides 30 learning tracks ranging from web development to digital marketing, data science, and artificial intelligence.

It also employs a hybrid model where students must spend 50% of their time studying online and the other half at one of GOMYCODE's network of 20 physical centres.

According to Bouhlel, the company employs over 500 local teachers across the globe and teaches students in over 12 languages. GOMYCODE also claims to have grown from 100 students in its first year to approximately 4,000 active students today.

Moreover, students on the platform will participate in two types of programmes. One is a skill-based introductory course that can last up to three months and costs an average of $250. And the second is a five-month career-led study that costs an average of $750.

GOMYCODE says it has partnered with various educational institutions to place students in jobs. Per the CEO, he has successfully placed 80% of his students through the employment programme.

Present in Tunisia, Bahrain, Morocco, Egypt, Algeria, Côte d'Ivoire, Senegal, and Nigeria, the funds will be used to expand its presence to 12 countries, including South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, and Saudi Arabia. Bouhlel also says they are expanding their presence in current markets, particularly Egypt and Nigeria.

In addition, GOMYCODE is going into full blitzscaling mode to reach 100,000 students and open 50 centres across Africa and the Middle East in the next two years.

What I'm reading and watching


  • Torche is looking for a UI/UX designer to join its team. If you’re one, apply here.
  • Binance has open roles in Communication, Business Development, Customer Support, Engineering, Marketing, Product, Customer support, and other departments. Check out the details and how to apply here.
  • The African Leadership Group and Udacity are offering 5,000 scholarships to African citizens who want to advance their careers in tech. by learning new digital skills. Scholarship recipients will enrol in one of the following Udacity Nanodegree programmes: Data Analyst, Full-Stack Web Developer, or Cloud Developer. Apply here.
  • Grant Master has announced the start of its second Creative Writers Fellowship cohort. The Fellowship for Creative Writers will take place virtually from July 4th to August 26th, 2022. Apply here.
Have an amazing weekend!

Victoria Fakiya (@latoria_ria)


A writer with ADHD who is interested in mental health and how technology is improving the lives of Africans with mental disorders.

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