Wala, a mobile money solution that uses blockchain technology has launched in three markets including South Africa and the firm behind the brand has big aspirations.
The service launched last week for Android users in Uganda, Zimbabwe, and South Africa.
The service uses blockchain technology along with the Dala cryptocurrency to allow users to send money, earn rewards and apply for credit services through the platform. Wala says that it is a “zero-fee ‘better than banking’ solution.
Wala is a mobile financial services platform built on the Ethereum blockchain. Tackling financial exclusion, their mission is to close the gap between consumers and financial service providers in emerging markets.
The Wala website touts that users can buy airtime and data for themselves or others and soon users will be able to transact, deposit or withdraw funds at stores.
Many Africans don’t have access to traditional financial institutions which makes simple tasks such as sending money to one’s family extremely difficult.
Co-founder of Wala and director of The Dala Foundation Tricia Martinez says that Wala is working solve that problem which impacts nearly half of the world’s population.
“To illustrate the impact of just one of Wala’s services, zero-fee remittance, 50% of Zimbabwean migrants living in South Africa sent a staggering $1 billion USD home last year. To do so they incurred fees of around 10-15%, that’s $100-$150 million in fees. Providing a zero-fee and borderless payments solution for these consumers is game-changing, it gives consumers more control over their financial well-being,” said Martinez.
The firm plans to put Wala on some 30 million devices with the help of Spire and its dApp service.
Wala has plans to launch in Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania, United Kingdom and Zambia by the end of the year.