Big Tech This Week

By Fatu Ogwuche

A weekly newsletter covering the biggest news in the tech industry, from the latest on social apps and industry trends to features on influential tech leaders, giving you valuable insight into the ever-changing tech industry.

A weekly newsletter covering the biggest news in the tech industry, from the latest on social apps and industry trends to features on influential tech leaders, giving you valuable insight into the ever-changing tech industry.

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Kuda Bank is bleeding

The short: Nigeria’s digital bank Kuda recorded a stunning ₦6 billion loss in 2021.Heavy funding: Kuda raised a ton of money in the past few years. In 2019, it received a $1.6 million pre-seed investment, followed by a $10 million seed round in December 2020 …


Who spends $20 billion in the middle of an economic crisis?

The short: Adobe’s acquiring cloud-based design platform Figma for $20 billion. The deal: Adobe says the acquisition will be half cash and half stock, plus 6 million additional Restricted Stock Units (RSUs) to be awarded to Figma’s CEO and staff after four ye…


Apple is coming for your bank accounts!

The short: Apple held its Far Out September event with new iPhones, Apple Watches and AirPods Pro.New iPhone: It’s literally ‘go big or go home’ for the base iPhone 14 lineup, with the iPhone 14 and 14 plus coming in at 6.1 and 6.7 inches and the ‘mini’ versi…


Risevest's CEO steps aside due to sexual impropriety claims

The short: Risevest CEO Eke Urum steps down in light of allegations of abuse of power and sexual impropriety.Full disclosure: I’m an early investor in Risevest. I had a quick chat with Urum, who says he’ll stay silent until the investigation is over in two we…


The 19 year-old wunderkind building the next big crypto company

Day One! In our latest edition, I had a great chat with 19-year-old wunderkind Njoku Emmanuel – CEO and co-founder of crypto startup Lazerpay. After dropping out of school to disapproving parents who wanted a medical career for him, he forfeited several lucra…


Africa's big money moves

The short: Africa dominates the global money market by 70%.By the numbers: Mobile transaction volumes in Africa have grown dramatically due to the widespread usage of smartphones across the continent. The World Bank and African Development Bank (AFDB) estimat…


Kenya is the king of fundraising!

The short: Kenyan startups recorded the highest funding growth, beating Africa’s top startup cities by banking close to $1 billion in the first half of 2022.African growth: Comparatively, Nigeria received the most funding this year, signing 160 deals for $864…


TikTok’s in hot water again o

The short: More countries are giving TikTok the side eye. Mo money same problems: TikTok got the attention of Former US President Donald Trump in 2020 when he threatened to ban the app over national security concerns and its ties to China. But before Trump co…


Instagram is a good listener

The short: Instagram temporarily walked back its latest updates, thanks to stinging user feedback.The spark: The dramatic week began with an IG post and a link to a petition – from photographer Tati Bruening, demanding: Make Instagram Instagram aga…


How Wasoko built a $625 million company

A big step in the right directionLarge corporations do not run retail in Africa. Instead, its front line is made up of informal players who sell hundreds of billions of dollars in consumer products each year. This lucrative sector is plagued with inefficienci…


And we're back! 🎉

The short: Hear ye, hear ye – the newsletter is back! 🎉🎉Why it matters: Big Tech This Week officially turned a year old on June 13th, and it's crazy to think how far the newsletter's come. In one year, we published 42 issues on the founders and companies chan…


I've got some news :)

Top of mind: Happy Sunday!The newsletter will be a year old next month, a surprising but great reminder of how fleeting time is! I still remember typing the first words and excitedly sending them out to subscribers, mostly family and friends.Almost a year lat…


Kenya’s fintech ecosystem has an exciting new player

The short: Fintech startup Tanda has broken through Kenya’s most challenging industry and is quickly staking a claim on M-Pesa's market share. Tanda makes a move: Kenya’s reputation as a global hub of financial innovation services on the continent has been dr…


Ethiopia gets backed by Africa’s largest fintech platform

The short: Kenya’s mobile money M-Pesa is coming to Ethiopia!What this means: Ethiopia’s state-owned Ethio telecom has maintained a monopoly over Ethiopia’s telecommunications services since its launch in 2010. That changed last year when a consortium led by …


How to get equity in African startups

Day One! I am excited to introduce Day One, a new monthly segment that spotlights emerging startups building great products within the tech ecosystem in Africa. I'm introducing GetEquity, self-styled as "a private marketplace for investors and companies to tr…


Elon Musk is Twitter's new king

The short: Elon Musk joined Twitter’s board after netting a 9.2% stake – making him Twitter’s largest shareholder.A series of unfortunate events: Twitter has had a dramatic year. First, Jack Dorsey announced his exit from Twitter to focus on Bitcoin. Then, ne…


How Flutterwave built a Unicorn

The Origin StoryThe idea for Flutterwave came during CEO Olugbenga ‘GB’ Agboola’s time as an employee of South Africa’s Standard Bank.GB: My job was to build transactional products and services for corporate and investment banking partners, and we discovered …


The scandal that unravelled Nigeria's tech ecosystem

The short: Nigeria’s payroll management startup Bento was publicly humiliated this week for the abusive treatment of its employees.The 411: Nigeria’s tech ecosystem faced a reckoning this week following TechCabal’s exposé on Bento’s culture. Bento claims to “…


Ghana shuts down one of its biggest startups

The short: Days after Ghana’s fintech company Dash raised $32.8 million in seed funding, the Bank of Ghana (BOG) shut it down for offering financial services without regulatory approval. How Dash was built: Dash launched in 2019 after CEO Prince Boakye Boampo…


Nigerian banks strike again

The short: Nigerian banks announced a new limit of $20 monthly on international web transactions using local currency debit cards – thanks to the Central Bank. Word on the street: Nigeria’s Central Bank informed local banks that they would need to source US d…