Nigeria’s Social Payments Startup, Abeg App Gets Mobile Money License by CBN, Rebrands as PocketApp

Nigeria’s Social Payments Startup, Abeg App Gets Mobile Money License by CBN, Rebrands as PocketApp

Abeg Technologies Limited, acquired by PiggyTech Global Limited, the parent company of PiggyVest, today announced that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had granted it an Approval In Principle (AIP) to operate as a Mobile Money Operator (MMO) in Nigeria. 

Abeg is currently the first Nigerian social commerce platform to be granted an MMO license by the CBN. As a result, the social commerce platform is rebranding as “Pocket by PiggyVest,” or just PocketApp.

PocketApp, as it is now known, refers to its new features that allow users to purchase and sell products through virtual pocket shops, reinforcing its push into the Nigerian social commerce sector, expected to grow from $791.6 million in 2022 to reach $4889.2 million by 2028, according to report by Research and Market. 

This is the first step toward final approval for the startup, subject to the satisfaction of specific CBN conditions.

Odunayo Eweniyi, Co-Founder and COO of PiggyTech Global Limited, said, “We’re tremendously thrilled that PocketApp has been awarded permission in principle as a Mobile Money Operator in Nigeria.” We will now work closely with the Central Bank to meet all requirements for a full operating license, allowing us to continue growing and increasing the scope of our social payments, social commerce, and other digital financial products to reach millions more Nigerian micro-entrepreneurs.”

“PocketApp affirms its commitment to the financial inclusion agenda of the CBN and the Federal Republic of Nigeria and will continue to make it easier for our teeming young population to seamlessly carry out their transactions while saving them costs and giving them more access to get paid,” he added.

With this license, the startup will be able to conduct activities such as wallet creation and management, e-money issuing, USSD, agent recruitment and management, pool account management, non-bank acquiring as defined in Nigeria’s regulatory requirements for non-bank merchant acquiring, card acquiring, and any other activities that the CBN may permit.

Patricia Adoga, COO of PocketApp, commented on the startup’s progress thus far, saying, “We believe that social commerce will survive better in a more trustworthy environment.” As a result, we implemented escrow to our payment infrastructure, safeguarding consumers and sellers and many other features to ensure a pleasant shopping experience on the app.”

In 2021, the app was launched as Abeg App. With the current change to PocketApp, the payments app has about 2 million users to date, initially focusing on transferring and receiving money. However, it has since evolved into a full-fledged social commerce platform linking shoppers and merchants across Nigeria and Africa.

Blessed Frank

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