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OPay’s Failure Prompts Reflection in Nigeria’s Tech Community

Opay workers sit to monitor riders in the field at the company's control room, Ikeja in Lagos, on August 30, 2019. PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP

Last week’s announcement by the Chinese-owned Nigerian-based e-commerce and payments company OPay to suspend four of its services (ORide, OTrade, OCar, OFood) caught a lot of people by surprise. After raising an impressive $170 million in a Series B funding round last fall from some of China’s hottest VC and tech companies, OPay was among the most well-funded fintech start-ups in Nigeria’s burgeoning tech sector.

Just over half a year later, the company said in a statement on Twitter that due to the worsening economic conditions brought on by the COVID-19 outbreak, the company needs to restructure its business away from transportation and mobility in order to focus on its already successful payments operations.

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