Meet the Founder: Kyshi

In an era where the global economy is rapidly integrating, cross-border transactions remain a persistent challenge for Africans. While the world races ahead, the African continent has often been left trailing behind in terms of financial connectivity. A glimmer of hope emerged in 2011 when Ayo Akindele conceived the idea for Kyshi, a visionary platform aimed at facilitating seamless cross-border transactions. Ayo’s dream was to establish a formal, user-friendly, and secure system that could bridge borders and streamline transactions and in 2020, his dream became a reality when Kyshi was officially established with its headquarters in the UK. The fintech startup has also secured a total of $420,000 in funding, with a noteworthy $100,000 raised in May 2022.

One of the major hurdles in cross-border transactions is navigating compliance requirements and foreign exchange management. Kyshi addresses these challenges head-on by offering real-time transaction tracking, virtual account generation, and international payment processing spanning over 100 countries. In doing so, Kyshi is poised to transform the financial landscape, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, where money transfer costs are notoriously high, as reported by the Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development for the World Bank.

Founder of Kyshi, Ayo Akindele’s journey from the corporate world to entrepreneurship is an inspiring narrative. His 14-year tenure at Preqin, a leading financial data and information provider, equipped him with invaluable insights into business and sales. However, Ayo chose to embark on a new adventure, charting his course in the world of entrepreneurship. His vision for Kyshi is clear from this statement he made in an interview “We want to provide a formal, safe, and efficient way for Africans to exchange currencies across borders. With us, you can determine how far your money can go at the click of a button.”

Ayo conceived the idea of kyshi in 2011, after he experienced difficulty with receiving and sending funds from Nigeria to the UK. This idea progressed into a WhatsApp group in 2016, officially launched in 2020 and became one of 60 African-focused start-ups selected for the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund 2022.

Kyshi’s commitment to innovation and digital financial inclusion has not gone unnoticed. In 2021, the company was selected for the prestigious Techstars Toronto accelerator program, and it became a recipient of the Google for Startups Black Founders Fund in September of the same year. Furthermore, Kyshi was among the 52 companies to stand out from the Mercury Raise Seed 2022 Fall Cohort.

In a world that demands seamless global connectivity, Kyshi is emerging as a beacon of hope for Africans seeking to transcend the barriers of cross-border transactions. With Ayo Akindele’s vision and expertise, Kyshi is poised to make a lasting impact in the fintech industry, offering a secure platform and innovative services that empower individuals to take control of their financial futures. Kyshi lets you exchange currencies with ease and beat bank rates, all from the comfort of your home.

HealthCap Africa’s strategic investment in Kyshi, the pioneering fintech platform, aligns seamlessly with their overarching mission of promoting a healthier and more prosperous Africa. See some of our other fintech portfolio companies here

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