Japan’s Sompo Buys Stake In Africa’s BTC-Enabled Remittance Service
Nikkei Asian Review, an Asia-based English tabloid, reported that Japanese insurance firm Sompo has collaborated with BTC Africa, also referred to as BitPesa, a pan-African digital payment platform.
Sompo Holdings Inc. supposedly shelled out 570 million yen ($5 million) to obtain a 10% stake in BitPesa, an African Bitcoin (BTC) startup that was established in 2013, with a primary focus on crypto-based fiat transfers between the UK and Kenya.
While disclosing the investment, Sompo explained that the partnership is centered on the “digitalization of global remittance services.”
Further Sompo said
“Using BitPesa’s technology, developed through various experiments in remittances and settlements, we will extend our presence in the international remittance service market and consider the application of this technology to the insurance field.”
The media release categorically states that Sompo intends to utilize the crypto-supported fiat transfer services employed by BitPesa to minimize the overall costs and handling time for the worldwide transfer of value, highlighting that Sompo’s prevailing work can be protracted to grasp a more far-reaching customer base through BitPesa’s global transfer services that aim developing nations.
The report also highlights the growing role of global transfers in order to facilitate the accelerated circulation of people, goods, data and services worldwide economically.
Notably, BitPesa has already secured venture capital funding from the likes of prime crypto industry VC firms such as Draper VC, Digital Currency Group, and Pantera Capital. The firm has utilized the financial support to build a worldwide fund transfer network with Bitcoin as a base currency in order to enhance financial framework between the emerging markets, Europe, and the UK.
Crypto’s role in facilitating easier access to funds and greater transaction efficiency has been at the forefront in addressing wealth generation and investment in Africa, with analysts stressing the importance of improving the continent’s financial inclusion and remittance infrastructure.
In the global insurance industry, the technology that supports crypto currencies, blockchain, is increasingly seen as an innovative solution for the industry. This year, insurance company Marsh partnered with IBM on the first commercial blockchain insurance verification solution.