3 minutes, 35 seconds

20 March 2022

Akiba Digital chooses Stitch for fraud-free access to financial data

by Thea Sokolowski, Head of Marketing & Communications​

Problem: The Akiba Digital team was using an international data provider to onboard and verify businesses on their platform, and to access their transaction and balance history. However, when customers logged into their accounts via the provider’s platform, their local banks often flagged it as potential fraud, impacting customer trust and churn rates.

Stitch solution: The team switched to Stitch and launched with our Financial Data product, allowing them to quickly and securely validate customers’ information and identity, and access their transaction and balance history, without fear of fraud.

Result: With Stitch, the Akiba team can securely onboard and verify customers and access a detailed overview of their affordability and financial health, in less than five minutes – without raising concern with local banks. As a result, they’re able to gain a deeper understanding of applicants’ businesses and get them access to relevant financing solutions much faster.

According to The World Bank, the financing gap for SMEs in sub-Saharan Africa stands at $245 billion. Akiba Digital is a fintech that aims to close that gap by connecting SMEs in Africa to financiers through embedded lending solutions and alternative credit scoring. Their mission is to enable previously excluded businesses across the continent to better access essential credit so they can continue to grow.

Initially launched in 2017, Akiba Digital began as an investment solution designed to teach individuals how to become better at investing. However, they conducted an analysis among businesses on the continent and saw that according to their research, 80% are excluded from necessary credit and lending solutions – a major contributor to the financing gap. They soon pivoted to address this challenge specifically, and today help businesses of all sizes to better access critical financing.

In 2021 the team launched Insyts – a financing tool designed to help SMEs unlock credit and build their financial health. The progress has been exciting. In 2022 alone, registrations from SMEs on the Insyts platform have skyrocketed, with registration of over 5,000 SMEs on the platform within three months, reinforcing the need and demand for their solution.

Akiba Digital Insyts platform Stitch Financial Data

Akiba Digital launches with Stitch to enable easy onboarding, eliminate fraud + offer more tailored recommendations

Previously, the Akiba team was using an international data provider to onboard and verify businesses on their platform. However, they found that when customers logged into the provider’s platform with their local banking details in South Africa, the activity would often be flagged by their banks as fraudulent, and customers would receive warnings. As a result, these businesses lost trust and would often churn.

The Akiba Digital team switched to Stitch in order to provide a safe and reliable solution to onboard their customers. With Stitch, businesses can feel safe knowing their data and money is secure; we never share banking details with anyone, and all data is encrypted on our platform. Today, Akiba Digital customers are able to link their accounts securely through Stitch SafeLink, without raising flags with their banks.

Akiba Digital Stitch onboarding Login

The team uses Stitch to onboard customers, verify their account information and access their transaction and balance data to get a comprehensive view of their affordability and financial health, in less than five minutes. As a result, they’re able to provide fast, tailored financing recommendations and help businesses access credit more quickly.  

“What stood out about Stitch was that their longer-term vision aligns with ours. Stitch can help not only with verifying bank data, but also with things like secure bank payments, fraud protection and more, which can enable us to better serve the businesses we work with,” said Somila Dayile, Product Manager at Akiba Digital.

In the future, the Akiba team can leverage customers’ linked financial accounts to also enable instant, secure bank payments and payouts with Stitch. 

What’s next for Akiba Digital

The focus for the Akiba team today is to get essential financing into the hands of their customers as quickly as possible.

“Our goal is to make this happen within five minutes,” Dayile said. “This means verifying that applicants do qualify for funding and can receive it within their bank accounts as quickly as possible, which is where Stitch comes in. We’ve seen how much of a difference it can make for a business when that money can arrive in their account very quickly. A solution like Stitch brings us closer to achieving that goal.” 

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