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Meet Akinjide Abengunde, our Group Head of Compliance & Operational Risk. Akinjide is a risk compliance professional who enjoys watching and playing football and dislikes injustice. 

In today’s pacesetter story, Akinjide tells us what drew him to Cellulant, his role in Cellulant Nigeria’s recently renewed Payment Service Solutions Licence and why he loves his job.

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My name is Akinjide Abengunde, also known as “jidbeg.” I am the firstborn in our family, and my favourite meal is pounded yam and egusi and I am a huge fan of Davido.

I completed my MBA at the Obafemi Awolowo University at Osun State. I have 12 years of experience being a risk and compliance professional spanning telecoms, banks and Fintech.

What attracted you to Cellulant?

After gaining experience in banking, I decided to explore the FinTEch space.  I joined Cellulant due to its vast footprint in Africa. We’ve recently expanded into the UK and the UAE.  With this considerable reach comes an opportunity to broaden my compliance knowledge in various jurisdictions.

What do you love most about working at Cellulant?

I love the culture; the staff here always strive to live up to the company’s core values, which has been the most significant enabler in ensuring we deliver on the company mission: to create opportunities that accelerate economic growth for all of Africa. I also love that I get to work for a pan-African fintech Company that is forever evolving.

What’s the one problem you are solving for clients in your market?

Cellulant has operations in 35 countries across Africa, simplifying payments for businesses. My role requires that I guide and advise the company on carrying out its activities sustainably by mitigating the inherent risks. Recently, I was part of the team that worked towards acquiring the renewal of our ‘Payment Service Solution Provider’ License in Nigeria, which was a success; Now, the business will continue to power payments solutions in Nigeria.

Why was it essential to renew Nigeria’s ‘Payment Service Solution Provider License ?

The purpose of the renewal was to ensure that the Nigerian market carries out business in line with regulations in Nigeria because the services we offer require Payment Service Solution licensing, which the Central Bank of Nigeria usually issues. Additionally, the license grants us assurance to our stakeholders and partners in Nigeria so that they are aware that we are legally regulated.

Why is compliance important?

Compliance is important because it ensures that we have a great relationship with regulators, we adhere to guiding operational laws, rules and policies we operate in, and compliance also generally enables business growth.

What would you say has been the most exciting part of the job?

I am working with people with different cultural backgrounds across many markets, exploring and experiencing the different African cultures through the cellulant.

What has been the most rewarding moment?

With my vast experience of 12 years, throughout those years, having the opportunity to grow and advance through my career ladder has been a great reward. With hard work and determination, I will continue to conquer.

What has been the greatest challenge/learning opportunity about the job?

Simply put, without explaining too much: The need to think outside the box to achieve set goals.

In your own words, what does Cellulant want to do in Africa, and why is that inspirational for you?

Cellulant’s mission is to simplify payments in Africa, which will, in turn, positively impact Africa’s economy. I find this inspirational to me because I know the work that I do impacts people from different walks of life through the work that we do.

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