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Renmoney, Cowrywise, and Flutterwave have emerged as the leading startups

Nigerian Tech Startups have employed about 19,344 people as of August 2022, according to to report from Disrupt Africa.

Fintech companies, Renmoney, Cowrywise, and Flutterwave have emerged as the leading startups in terms of employment in Nigeria. The three fintech topped 481 startups in Nigeria that have employed a total of 19,334 people as of August 2022. 

This is according to the Nigerian Startup Ecosystem Report by Disrupt Africa, which tracked the performance of startups in Nigeria. The top 3 fintech startups, according to the report, have employed a total of 2,003 staff. Specifically, Renmoney was said to have employed 892 people, Cowrywise 570, and Flutterwave 541.  

The report also reveals that the Nigerian fintech space is by far the biggest employer within the country’s broader startup ecosystem, accounting for 8,653 jobs.

It adds that 6 of the biggest 10 employers in the Nigerian startup ecosystem are fintech companies, which include RenMoney (892), Cowrywise (570), Flutterwave (541), TeamApt (460), FairMoney (385), and Kuda (356).  

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Recommended Reading: Top 10 fintech apps in 2022

What they are saying 

Disrupt Africa, in the report said: Nigerian startups employ a combined total of 19,334 people, dwarfing the 11,340 employed by their counterparts in South Africa. The average headcount per startup stands at 40. The fintech industry accounts for almost half of Nigerian startup employment, with 8,653 jobs, while between them the fintech, e-commerce, mobility and logistics, and e-health spaces account for 74.9% of all jobs. 

  • Fintech startups are by far the most common within the Nigerian startup ecosystem, as they are within most other established ecosystems on the continent. A total of 173 companies, 36%of the 481 ventures tracked in this report, fall into this category, a figure that is three times larger than the next most populated space, e-commerce, and retail-tech. 
  • Fintech tends to draw the most attention in the majority of Africa’s startup communities, as well as the lion’s share of funding. In terms of sub-sectors, activity is diverse, though payments and remittances (46 startups, 26.6% of Nigerian fintech ventures) and lending and financing (34 startups, 19.7% of Nigerian fintech ventures) are clear leaders,” it added. 

Commenting on the report, senior investment associate, Quona Capital, Kofoworola Agbaje, said: There is much to celebrate about the tech ecosystem in Nigeria. Despite the macroeconomic headwinds and numerous regulatory hurdles, the special breed of entrepreneurs, investors, and operators working in Nigeria have continued to succeed and rake up achievements. Nigeria remains the top VC market on the continent with startups having raised over US$3.7 billion since 2019.  

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In Nigeria (and even on the continent), fintech remains the top industry both in terms of the number of deals and funding amount. This year alone, fintech startups (excluding fintech adjacencies and enablers) account for more than 60% of the total funding amount raised by startups in Nigeria. The impact of these achievements on the market has been enormous,” she added.  

Other key highlights of the report

  • Lagos is the hub of Nigeria’s startup ecosystem and has a claim to being the leading startup city on the continent, alongside the likes of Cape Town and Nairobi.  
  • No fewer than 425 (88.4%) of the Nigerian tech startups tracked by this report are based out of the city. Capital city Abuja comes a poor second with just 23 ventures, while activity is also in evidence in 13 other locations. 
  • The busiest year on record for the foundation of Nigerian fintech ventures was 2021 when 31 of the companies tracked opened their doors. Twenty-seven launched in 2020 and 28 in 2019, which added to the three found to have opened so far in 2022. 

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