What a wild year it was! The pandemic has had a massive impact on all of us, which isn’t different for our team at Zazuu.
The Remittance industry went through the sharpest decline in recent history due to a fall in the wages and employment of migrant workers globally. However, the pandemic also brought about an accelerated change; many online money transfer providers reported a surge in online transactions due to lockdowns.
As more migrants customers turn to the web to send money to their loved ones, we saw the importance of improving our product and making it available to more people so they can save on their money transfers. That’s why we introduced Zazuu’s Choice and added more sending and receiving countries. We also launched the web version! All whilst working from home and working our usual 9-5 to pay the bills and support our family.
Let’s look at everything that happened in 2020.
What we set to do in 2020
At the start of 2020, we wanted to get our product in customers’ hands and proof product-market fit. At the end of 2020, here is our effort to doing just that:
- We released our minimum viable product to IOS and Android in H2 2020
- We helped 2,000+ people to compare and save on their money transfers
- We became an affiliate partner with TransferWise, WorldRemit and Azimo
- We launched Zazuu for Web in December 2020
- We ended the year with £730.63 in affiliate revenue
- We have the fintech partnership needed to enable end-to-end payment, integrate multi-currency wallets and other modern banking feature to our product.
- We added more sending and receiving countries to the product.
- We received an average rating of 4.9 and positive reviews from 38 happy customers on Trustpilot, App Store and Play Store
- We built an online community around Zazuu.
- We partnered with micro-influencers in the diaspora to reach a wider audience.
What we learnt in 2020
- We learnt to manage a remote team.
- Capturing real-time FX rate from money transfer providers is a real challenge as many firms don’t have an open API.
- Nigeria is the biggest remittance market in Africa, and international money transfer providers prioritise this market.
- Remittance customers love to shop around for the best deal before sending money
- Zazuu customers are demanding for a convenient way to transfer money within the app.
- Customers are willing to try out a new provider that offers a better rate but also want to feel safe and secure when completing the transaction.
- Nigerian Naira is volatile, and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) can do whatever they want with very little notice!
- When it comes to cross-border money transfers, there is no going back to pre-2020. Digital the new norm.
- We started our pre-seed fundraising in Q3 2020
- We collected $10k cash from an angel investor.
- We have over $300k commitment from high net-worth individuals.
On Tuesday, the 20th of October 2020, armed men of the Nigerian Army arrived at the scene of a peaceful #EndSARS protest in Lekki, Lagos and opened fire on peaceful and unarmed protesters.
The mass shooting was captured on Instagram Live and watched by over 70,000 people. We were numbed and helpless as we watched the #LekkiMassacre horror on social media.
At Zazuu, we exist because of our community. We are part of the African community. We see it as our job to help push initiatives that empower our community wherever they are. This is why we responded to the horror by creating an initiative to help Nigerians both home and across the diaspora to process their feelings about the mass shooting.
- We received philanthropic support from mental health experts and the community
- In total, we raised £1,455 from 31 beautiful souls
- We hosted a wellbeing session with a Frontline Therapist.
- The money raised will be donated to mental health and wellbeing organisations in the UK and Nigeria.
Where we’re headed in 2021
Our plan for 2021 is to increase awareness for Zazuu whilst introducing a convenient way to complete transactions within the app and allow customers to manage multiple currencies.
How you could help
We are looking to connect and partner with organisations and individuals who work with Africans in the diaspora.
That was it for Zazuu in 2020
We want to thank all of you. We would be unable to accomplish all that we did in 2020 if not for our community and the generous support of people who believe in the team and our mission.
We are a small team that wholeheartedly believe that transparency, greater choices and convenience are necessary allies to reduce the risk and cost of moving money to and within Africa. Our mission is to empower Africans and migrants all over the world to become smarter with money.
We look forward to 2021 with high optimism, more collaborations and to championing our customers.