It is common knowledge that getting into the fintech space in Nigeria is no fun-fare. Participants have to deal with deterring regulations from the central bank of Nigeria (CBN) and also the constant harassment from law enforcers. These facts places a question mark on the feasibility of accessing core technological infrastructure and services that solution will built on.
It was not until December 2019, that the Financial Services Innovators (FSI) launched the first fintech industry innovation sandbox in Nigeria.
It is an initiative that intends to support fintech entrants who have innovative ideas in financial services, with information and resources to start, succeed, and scale their businesses. Even so only limited functionalities are available in the sand box
What Exactly is Okra?
Okra Inc, the brain child of Fara Ashiru , is a super connector that allows developers and companies to connect securely and seamlessly to all financial institutions in Nigeria. With functionalities to perform a variety of financial transactions.
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Service providers like Okra aim to reduce the stress developers usually face when trying to get access critical financial technology infrastructures, by providing Apis that implement endpoints for financial transactions.
Overview Of Okra API
• Auth – This endpoint allows users to get access to a users bank account number, routing number as well as other high level account details.
• Identity – This endpoint allows you to retrieve various account holder information on file with the bank, including names, emails, phone numbers, and addresses for verification.
• BVN check/Verification – This endpoint allows developers to verify user BVN.
• TIN Verifiation – This endpoint allows us to verify any business in Nigeria
• Balance -This endpoint allows developers to verify users balance in real time.
• Transactions – This endpoint pull data on user debit/credit transactions
• Income and Revenue – This endpoint allows users to Verify Employment and Revenue, Demonstrate Validity, and the Ownership of Identity Data.
• Payments – This endpoint allows users to create both instant and future payments, retrieve payment information, receive payouts and verify payments.
The api also provide endpoints for selfie verification,debit/credit score rating, getting information about your benefactors, understanding the network of people you transact business with and lots more. To view more about Okra api you can head over to their api documentation.
Services and products like those provided by Okra will go a long way in addressing most of the pain points experience by developers when building financial solutions. It is no wonder that they recently got a $1m pre-seed funding.
Not only have they successfully helped developers overcome most of the challenges they faced when building fintech solutions they did it in style .