The savings culture in Nigeria is almost non-existent, largely because the spending culture is overwhelming, the poverty rate is high and cost of living is almost intolerable. But, there are ways to go around it, and to reverse the trend, we have seen the influx of savings apps in today’s fast-changing world.
One of such apps is Savebeta from Beta Analytics Limited, a relatively new platform gradually gaining ground with the double-edged trust and access offer it brings to the ‘crowded’ Nigerian fintech market.
Founded by Godwin and Johnson Azeke in April 2021, Savebeta is leading a renewed charge for the inculcation of a disciplined and dedicated savings culture among Nigerians.
‘’The major reason behind starting Savebeta was that we found that some persons were earning money, but they still had challenges paying their rent. These people are making money but they just need a system that puts a stop to rushing other than planning to sort basic needs. Savebeta is helping to address and reduce all of that’’, Johnson Azeke, co-founder/Chief Operating Officer (COO), said of the startup’s creation in an exclusive interview with Technext.
Today, the Savebeta app serves the everyday Nigerians, helping them meet key savings targets and taking care of needs and emergencies.
By extension, the benefits are trickling down to corps members (youth on a mandatory one-year national service in the country) to devotedly and consistently put money aside every month throughout their service year. And, that’s making everyone with a means of livelihood become financially secure.
Savebeta offers between 5 – 15.5% interest rates on money set aside on the app. It’s a decent interest package that is “not too high but within the CBN standard”, according to Johnson Azeke. And this is dependent on the savings product users select on the app.
How Savebeta works
The savings-driven app has a chain of products listed for users. From the Flexible Savings to the Goal-Focused Savings, there is a plan for everyone. The offer also entails Fixed Savings and BetaKopa, a product for serving corps members in Nigeria. For BetaKopa, the catch is the reward.
Savebeta gives an opportunity to enterprising corps members to get a ₦2.5 million business capital if they save ₦10,000 consistently throughout their service year. Beyond the reward, encouraging this active population to develop and maintain the habit of keeping money aside gets them ready for life after service.
The app enables everyday Nigerians with the means to overcome saving challenges and ”easily reach their savings goal without incurring any cost.”
Azeke says the app makes funds (savings) readily available to customers when they make a demand for it – without delay.
From offline to online: A necessity story
Savebeta launched in April 2021 and was received well until it began to receive complaints from customers.
According to co-founder Johnson, some agents were playing dirty cards and soiling the startup’s reputation.
“When we started on April 5, 2021, we had a couple of mobile agents moving around to push our offering to artisans, and business owners and talk to them about targeted savings. Everything was going smoothly until we started having some challenges. Some of the agents were not remitting the exact amount due to customers.
“Although we had some technology to manage the offline payments, the issue had created a trust problem. So we had to deal with it.
The issue birthed the Savebeta app – and effectively put an end to offline collection of savings.
With loopholes blocked, collections now happen strictly between the startup and the user. More than a 1,000 users have put their trust in Savebeta’s savings products now.
Johnson Azeke notes that Savebeta is well equipped with the nuances of the everyday Nigerian, ensuring the app delivers value and stays ahead of the competition.
“We found that most people were complaining about real access to their money on other savings platforms when they want it. Savebeta addressed these complaints; there is always an emergency money plan that is set aside for urgent needs”, he told Technext.
According to him, giving customers seamless access to their funds, while encouraging financial discipline, effectively sets Savebeta apart from the competition.
Playing the long game
Azeke says Savebeta is aiming for the full stretch, with plans to expand into at least three African countries over the next few years. The company also wants to be a household platform for savings.
We have a very solid business plan at Savebeta. In five years from now, we want to be in at least three African countries and become a household name that people will want to reckon with when it comes to savings.
Johnson Azeke, COO Savebeta
With this audacious plan, it will be interesting to see Savebeta grow and provide the means to financial security to more Nigerians.
Are you a saver or a spender? Whichever you are, Savebeta is saying saving is better.
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