PayBox, a Ghanaian payments startup, believes that DeFi provides Africa the opportunity to leapfrog cross-border challenges.
“Africa has the ability to leapfrog into decentralized finance (DeFi) and smooth over the difficulties of cross-border finance through blockchain and Web3,” said Co-Founder, David Boye-Doku, during the Africa Money & DeFi Summit in Accra, Ghana.
PayBox is described as a fast-growing African fintech start-up cross-border mobile growth engine enabling easy access to offline and online digital payment and business solutions.
“Decentralizing finance in Africa will give everyone access and the choice of alternative currencies; it offers financial and digital inclusion,” Boye-Doku said.
Paybox is one of several startups sponsored by the International Trade Center (ITC), through its NTF V Tech project in Ghana, to exhibit at the West Africa Money and DeFi event. Fintech leaders like MFS Africa and Paystack and Web3-focused businesses, Revio and Mazzuma, also attended the summit, sharing their industry knowledge.
PayBox began its business journey by offering mobile payment solutions to small and medium sized enterprises.
“The next phase is infusing Web3 rails on mobile payments so that a local wallet can become an international wallet for small businesses and millennials in Africa. Your phone number can become a crypto wallet to send funds easily across Africa,” said Boye-Doku.
Web3 wallets can be web-based, mobile-based, or even hardware based. Their relatively simple user interaction provides the user access to decentralized blockchain-based apps that serve as gateways to crypto assets. This allows users to instantly send and receive those assets via mobile phone number, email, or crypto address.
Boye-Doku believes central bank digital currency (CBDC) is the key to the rapid development and growth of African economies.
“It would allow capital to move freely at lightning speed with near zero transaction fees and convert crypto into currencies. This means we can spend in our domains as well as transact with people not in our domains,” he said.
“We chatted with a representative from the Bank of Ghana, and they are looking for a token that will sit on top of the Ghanaian CBDC. We are already building an exchange token so they can ride on that,” he said.