$1.5B Nigerian Fintech Firm Hires JPMorgan To Advise On IPOs

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Written by Peter Pedroncelli
Nigerian fintech firm
Interswitch’s payment network enables mobile payment options for Nigerians. The Nigerian fintech firm is considering listing in London and Lagos this year. Photo by nappy from Pexels

Nigerian fintech firm Interswitch is planning to list on both the London and the Nigeria stock exchanges this year.

In preparation for the initial public offering, the company has hired JPMorgan Chase & Co., Citigroup Inc., and Standard Bank Group Ltd as advisors, according to Bloomberg.

With the IPO, Interswitch is expected to have a valuation between $1.3 billion and $1.5 billion, Punch reports.


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Interswitch has developed a multi-channel network for payment services across Africa. The Nigerian fintech firm is owned by private equity firm Helios Investment Partners.

Established in 2002, Interswitch has grown into a large company thanks to a combination of partnerships and acquisitions.

Interswitch is the owner of Verve, Nigeria’s most used payment card, accounting for 18 million of the 25 million cards in circulation in the country, according to the FinancialTimes.

The Nigerian fintech firm has been involved in acquisitions over the last five years. It acquired electronic payments processing firm Paynet for an undisclosed amount in 2014 and software company Vanso for $50 million in 2016, according to Crunchbase.

Interswitch also owns Quickteller, an online payments platform; Retailpay, a mobile business management platform, and Smartgov, an identity management and e-payment infrastructure for regional governments, Revolvy reports.

In May 2019, Interswitch signed a $73 million agreement with U.K. tech firm Becoz to deliver a cashless transport system in Nigeria.

Nigerian fintech firm reignites IPO plans

Interswitch planned for a London listing in 2017 but after the price of crude oil fell dramatically, IPO plans were put off until now, Techcentral reports.

The Nigerian payments firm has engaged with banks including JPMorgan Chase to assist it in moving forward with its IPO plans.

Following e-commerce platform, Jumia’s successful listing on the New York Stock Exchange earlier in the year, an Interswitch listing in London could create a second African tech unicorn.

Interswitch’s plan to list in London and Lagos mirrors telecommunications firm Airtel Africa, a subsidiary of Indian telecommunications group Bharti Airtel.

Airtel Africa listed shares of its Nigerian subsidiary in London in June before listing on the Nigerian Stock Exchange in July, according to TheBusinessStandard.

Airtel Africa’s listing was the third-largest after the initial public offering of Dangote Cement and the introductory listing of MTN Nigeria.