Orange Money Celebrates Decade of Financial Innovation in Africa

first_imgOrange Money is currently available in 17 African countries and 40 million customers strong, 13 million of whom use it every month.Orange Money, Orange’s mobile money solution, is celebrating its 10th anniversary, the company has announced.Launched in 2008, according to the release, the service currently has 40 million customers, and is available in 17 countries, reaching €26 billion (US$30.5 billion) in transactions in 2017. Orange Money is now one of the Group’s leading growth drivers and continues to evolve to better serve people, companies, institutions and governments.Initially launched in La Côte d’Ivoire in 2008, the success of the money transfer and mobile payment solution for unbanked or relatively unbanked populations is based on the accessible, universal nature of the service, which makes it possible for millions of people to perform instant, secure and reliable financial transactions using their mobile phone.Orange Money is currently available in 17 African countries and 40 million customers strong, 13 million of whom use it every month. Orange Money’s accelerating growth and sales which rose 60% from 2016 to 2017, have made it one of the Group’s top growth drivers in Africa, particularly in La Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, Burkina Faso, Senegal and Cameroon.In some countries, Orange says, the service gives close to 50% of users access to banking services in areas with low levels of bank usage.Orange Money is now much more than just a cash transfer service, the release said. “Over the past decade, the number of Orange Money services has quadrupled, leading to the financial inclusion of populations and helping drive national economic development.”The offer has been significantly expanded to include international transfers, bill payment, and wage payment services. The “Bank to Wallet” service, launched in 2015, is a major innovation that goes even further by enabling transfers between bank accounts and Orange Money accounts.Electronic money has also made it possible to facilitate exchanges and secure transactions, and is now a major advantage not only for individuals but also for major companies and SMEs.Changing Governance for Increased EffectivenessIn order to meet the compliance regulations that govern mobile money activities, Orange has created financial establishments with Central Bank approval in seven African countries, as well as a shared supervision and compliance control structure, CECOM, based in Abidjan. These structures guarantee transactions and facilitate dialogue directly with authorities, thereby simplifying the market launch of new services.The goal is to make Orange Money accessible for as many people as possible, in strict compliance with regulations set out of the Central Banks in the countries and currency zones where Orange operates.Alioune Ndiaye, CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa (OMEA) says that, “Orange Money makes real contributions to economic and social development in Africa and is a part of our strategy as a multiservice operator and digital transformation partner in Africa and the Middle East. Orange Money’s success is first and foremost a joint achievement, and I would like to thank all of the teams who work hard every day to ensure its success, which now represents a major share of OMEA turnover.”Mamadou Coulibaly, Orange Liberia CEO, says that, “Orange Money’s success is based on its usefulness, trustfulness and ease of use. It is the answer to the financial inclusion challenge in countries such Liberia.”The outlook for Orange MoneyAfter its transfer and payment services, Orange is going further with lending and savings services available directly by mobile phone. These services, which are available through partners, are already offered to Orange customers in Mali and Madagascar since early 2018 as part of the initial launch.International transfers, another strong area of development for Orange Money, aim to strengthen ties between people living outside their home countries and their loved ones.Finally, as smartphones become increasingly widespread and uses change rapidly, the Orange Money services are evolving with the development of an application for easier interactions and transactions.About OrangeOrange is one of the world’s leading telecommunications operators with sales of 41 billion euros in 2017 and has 149,000 employees worldwide at 30 June 2018, including 91,000 employees in France. The Group has a total customer base of more than 260 million customers at 30 June 2018, including 199 million mobile customers and 20 million fixed broadband customers worldwide.Present in 28 countries, Orange is also a leading provider of global IT and telecommunication services to multinational companies, under the Orange Business Services brand. In March 2015, the Group presented its new strategic plan Essentials2020, which places customers’ experience at the heart of its strategy with the aim of allowing them to benefit fully from the digital universe and the power of its new generation networks.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Softball Opens Home Schedule with Doubleheader Sweep over Bradley

first_imgStory Links After Drake added another run in the second, Bradley opened the third with back-to-back singles. With one out, the Braves pulled one down the left field line that went under Pena’s legs at third base and allowed two runs. The Valley on ESPN3 Roemmich cut Bradley’s lead by one after reaching base on a hit by pitch in the second. Roemmich stole second before scoring on a single from Frank. Preview DES MOINES, Iowa – The Drake University softball team completed two walkoff victories over Bradley (13-17, 2-4 MVC) Friday afternoon to remain undefeated in Missouri Valley Conference play. The Bulldogs opened the day with a 10-2 five-inning victory before a comeback 9-8 win over the Braves.    PDF Box Score Game 2 Watch Live The Bulldogs jumped out to a quick start in game one as eight Bulldog batters reached in a seven-run first inning. After leadoff batter Mandi Roemmich (West Des Moines, Iowa) struck out, Kennedy Frank (Chesterfield, Mo.) and Macy Johnson (Winterset, Iowa) recorded back-to-back singles. Taryn Pena (Columbia, Ill.) sent a ball deep into center field for an RBI double to put Drake up 2-0. Kailee Smith (Murrieta, Calif.) drew a walk on a full count before Sarah Maddox (Henderson, Nev.) added another hit to score Pena. Three more hits and two walks for Drake helped them close out the inning with a 7-0 lead. Full Schedule Roster Next Game: Pena drew a leadoff walk before pinch runner Libby Ryan (Mount Vernon, Iowa) stole second in the fourth. A single by Smith set up pinch runner Abby Buie (Gardner, Kan.) to steal second base before Ryan scored on an error by Bradley.center_img A pair of hits from Pena and Maddox in the first inning helped Drake jump out to an early 2-0 lead. Bradley took advantage of miscues from pitcher Nicole Timmons (Davenport, Iowa) in the second inning who had two hit by pitches and one walk and allowed three runs before she was pulled for Smith. Bradley 3/31/2018 – 11 AM The Bulldogs began to mount their comeback with two runs in the fifth inning on RBIs from Kelsey Wright (Olathe, Kan.) and Buie. Back-to-back singles from Frank and Johnson opened up the sixth inning before Ryan laid down a sac bunt to advance the pair to second and third. Smith sent a single out to left field that scored Frank before Johnson scored on the play after a throwing error by Bradley’s right fielder allowed her to score. Wright then tied the game at 8-8 with a sharp RBI single to left field.  Newman, who entered the day without a hit on the season, went 3-for-3 in game one with three runs batted in including a walkoff solo homerun to secure the five-inning run-rule victory. Smith (6-3) pitched 5.2 innings in relief of Timmons and allowed two runs (one earned) on eight hits with six strikeouts. Timmons allowed six runs on three hits in 1.1 innings pitched.  After going down 7-3 in the second game, the Bulldogs mounted a comeback to tie the game 8-8 before Pena notched a walkoff single that scored Johnson from second. Drake (24-9, 7-0 MVC) was led by Nicole Newman (Madison, Wis.) who continued to show her strength in the circle while also having a career day at the plate. Newman (10-2) pitched a complete five innings in game one of the doubleheader. She gave up four hits with two unearned runs and seven strikeouts. Following Friday’s doubleheader, Bradley and Drake close the series Saturday with a single game at an adjusted start time of 11 a.m. The series finale will be broadcast on The Valley on ESPN3. Print Friendly Version Drake picked up 23 hits on the day and scored 19 runs and nabbed seven stolen bases. PDF Box Score Game 1 last_img read more

How To Get The Most Out Of A Startup Accelerator

first_imgTags:#startups scott gerber China and America want the AI Prize Title: Who … What Nobody Teaches You About Getting Your Star… Startup accelerators: There are more of them – and more demand to land a spot within one – than ever before.  But how can you make sure your company gets the most out of the accelerator experience?To find out how real startup founders dealt with the accelerator issue, we asked eight successful entrepreneurs from the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC)  to share their experiences – and their advice for other founders considering a startup accelerator.   1. Build A RelationshipBuild a strong relationship with the people in charge of the accelerator. A common problem with entrepreneurs is that they go into their caves and forget to build the relationships necessary for their companies to grow. They’ll learn more and there will be more opportunities heading their way when they establish those connections. – John Hall, Digital Talent Agents 2. Step Up Your Game, But Don’t Get DistractedLast year, Her Campus was a winner and named Best All-Around Team in MassChallenge, the world’s largest start-up competition. We took advantage of the free office space we received and moved our business there, we networked with mentors who were connected to the program, we got free legal help from law firm sponsors, and got access to helpful seminars and workshops. However, we made sure to stay focused on building our business and not get distracted by all of the other activities we could partake in every day as part of the program. – Stephanie Kaplan, Her Campus Media 3. Be ProactiveI have been a part of both Startup Chile and now TechStars in Boston. The programs are very different, however with any program it’s important to be proactive. If you can clearly define what relationships you want to build, people you want to meet, and goals you would like to achieve, it will allow the program to help you! The accelerators are there to make introductions and they want you to be successful, so utilize their knowledge and network by asking them for the things that you need. – Paige Brown, BookingMarkets 4. Take Advantage Of MentorsI participated in Teens In Tech, an amazing accelerator for teens. They provided wonderful support, with classes, office space, connections and mentors. To get the most out of an accelerator you really need to take advantage of the network of mentors. They’re the ones who are always willing to help and make a difference in your business. – Ben Lang, EpicLaunch 5. Match Startup Needs To Accelerator OfferingsMy company, Imprint Energy, was part of Plug and Play’s accelerator in Silicon Valley. We’re a battery technology company, so we didn’t benefit much from having access to desk space, computing resources or the community of predominantly Internet entrepreneurs. We needed lab space and access to scientists and engineers, which we found elsewhere. What has proved useful is our continued relationship with Plug and Play and its facilitation of meetings with large corporate partners and potential customers who frequent the offices. – Brooks Kincaid, Imprint Energy 6. Find Great Financial AdvisorsFinding mentors is one of the many reasons that startups use an accelerator. In particular, use your accelerator to help you set up your accounting and finances. The key to strong startup financials is to set them up early and correctly. Advisors can help establish your day-to-day accounting functions like setting up an accounting system, establishing payroll and preparing financial statements. They can also offer guidance on larger financial strategy concerns such as creating a budget, understanding your cash flow and cash burn, and maintaining regulatory compliance. – David Ehrenberg, Early Growth Financial Services 7. Do You Really Need An Accelerator?I researched the topic of accelerators extensively as I was getting my business off the ground, but fortunately, I ended up being able to fund my startup completely with personal funds. It’s important to understand the difference between an accelerator and an incubator. An accelerator involves smaller amounts of capital, smaller amounts of equity and a shorter time frame, while an incubator usually involves bringing in an outside management staff and giving up more equity. The best way to get the most out of an accelerator is to be open to feedback, but be smart enough to filter out what you don’t feel is relevant. Also, shop around before you make your final decision. There are more accelerators available now than ever before, and it’s important to ask for references. – Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance 8. Do Your Due DiligenceNot all accelerators are created equal. With the growth of the entrepreneurial space has come a similar pop in the programs available for startups. Some are worth their weight in gold, while others are just looking to churn and burn their clients. Do your diligence before signing on – it is easy to find current and past startups of any accelerator who can give you real insight into what you are signing up for and whether the price is right. – Peter Minton, Minton Law Group, P.C.The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only non-profit organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses via live video chats, an expert content library and email lessons.center_img Related Posts How to Get Started in China and Have Success How OKR’s Completely Transformed Our Culturelast_img read more

DryShips Adds Fourth VLGC to Its Fleet

first_imgzoom Greek drybulk shipping firm DryShips has taken delivery of its fourth very large gas carrier (VLGC) newbuilding.Capable of carrying liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), the high specification ship will be employed under a time charter on a fixed rate with ten years firm duration to an oil major trading company.DryShips informed that it expects a total gross backlog associated with this time charter of up to USD 103.8 million.With this vessel, the company has taken delivery of all of the 17 ships it acquired since the beginning of 2017.In January 2017, DryShips enter into a “zero cost” option agreement to purchase up to four high specifications VLGCs, which were under construction at South Korean shipyard Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI).The ships in question were bought at a price of USD 83.5 million per unit.The acquisition was financed by using cash on hand, DryShips’ undrawn liquidity under the new Sifnos revolver and proceeds from its issuer managed equity transaction.last_img read more