2018 already seems to be a good year for start-ups in Nigeria. Start-ups in Nigeria raised almost 800% more in Q2 than they raised in the first quarter of the year, amounting into a total of $73,685,003 (about ₦26,567,127,831.65).
Among these start-ups, Piggybank raised $1.1 million in order to expand its online savings business and capitalise on the various opportunities in the market.
Piggybank isn’t just spearheading the digital savings culture in Nigeria but also transforming the way people bank. Piggybank is an online savings platform that helps manage spending habits by automating the process of saving regularly (daily, weekly or monthly) without upfront fees.
The fintech start-up has continuously rolled out new features and updates that have excited its users. The savings-focused start-up wants to also enable its users to request for a statement of account and use it to apply for visas. Piggybank users can also receive money from anyone by sending them a link. The company has also recently enabled a feature that allows users to transfer money from within the platform.
Some of Piggybank’s notable features, Piggyflex and Piggy Points, were recently released. PiggyFlex is a sub-account where all the interests generated from a Piggybank account is paid into.
The feature also allows users to withdraw their funds at any time with no withdrawal fee. “You can only get money into piggyflex when you have saved (worked hard for it)…not at random,” a co-founder mentioned when asked how the feature affected the company’s core.
Piggy Points meanwhile is a reward system for users who get 1 point per every N2,500 saved. Every point is equivalent to N10.
One of the features that have endeared the company to its users, especially low- and middle-income Nigerians, is SafeLock. This feature allows you put an amount of money aside for a fixed period — without having any access to it till that time is up. Think of it like your own customized fixed deposit account.
Nigeria, which was recently tagged as the country with highest number of poorest people in the world, is in need of a fledging savings culture as much as it needs better economic policies and infrastructure. If the poverty rate is to be reduced, the culture of savings has to be propagated as saving is one of the pathways to wealth creation.
A savings culture would also improve the thinking capacity of Nigerians by allowing them to put things into perspective. This culture has a positive effect on not just the current generations but generations to come, an extremely important legacy to leave to them.
Piggybank allows users to withdraw for free on set withdrawal dates, while withdrawing outside the set withdrawal dates will attract a 5-percent penalty. Thus, it gives you the discipline to leave your savings untouched till your savings target is reached.
In the 1st quarter (Q1) of this year alone, Piggybank users have saved over 70% of what was saved throughout 2017. Howbeit, the company has direct competitors in Cowrywise, Kolopay, and Reach. They have also seen indirect competitors venture into their space like Paylater which just released an investment and savings product. But Piggybank has the larger market share in the digital savings space and a superior public sentiment than its competitors.
Piggybank recently increased their interest rates from 6% to 10% annual interest rates on your savings which is spread over 4 quarters at 2.5% per quarter. While Safelock is now over 12.4% annually.
Users can also add their next of kin on Piggybank. In case of any eventualities, the next of kin can claim the estate.
Essentially, Piggybank’s upside, apart from the ease of reaching a savings target with a few clicks of a button, is the savings culture it fosters and aid in curbing scarcity mentality. Piggybank is highly customer influenced which is evident in the opportunities it gives its customers to share their uncensored experiences with its services and the features and updates the company has pushed based on customer feedback.
While there is a host of hot start-ups in Nigeria doing wonderful work such as Andela, Lifebank and Paylater, Piggybank’s imminent rise, customer-centricity and vibrant user base is impossible to ignore. This is what makes Piggybank Nigeria’s most exciting start-up right now.