Crisis deepens in Cellulant Nigeria Limited as co-founder resigns, over 35 staff sacked

Crisis deepens in Cellulant Nigeria Limited as co-founder resigns, over 35 staff sacked

Crisis

By Patrick Okohue

Crisis in Nigeria-based FinTech company, Cellulant Nigeria Limited may have deepened as the co-founder, Bolaji Akinboro, resigned his position as the CEO and co-group CEO.

According to a source who pleaded to remain anonymous, the company is plagued by unhealthy corporate governance practices by the board of directors and the group compliance unit.

This unhealthy practice according to our source has also led to a mass exit and unethical termination of more than 30 staff of Cellulant, a company that recently attracted the biggest fintech investment in Africa.

About three weeks ago, after the resignation of the CEO, it was gathered that Cellulant issued an official communication to its partners intimating them that one of its flagship platform, “Agrikore marketplace” which supports millions of farmers across Nigeria and guarantees the supply of raw commodities, the Agric value chain participants, would be shut down.

As stated on the company’s site; “Agrikore connects stakeholders and services providers to farmers and the unbanked.

The platform currently encompasses about 15,000,000 farmers’ records.”

This development, therefore, raises concern and it is deeply worrisome because the Agrikore platform supports large manufacturers and protects food security which is one of the biggest national dangers in recent time.

When contacted, a top-ranking official of the company who also requested not being named in this report confirmed the development while stating that the ex-CEO is always passionate about making Africa better through initiatives in education, healthcare, and agriculture.

Numerous attempts to reach the media personnel of the company for an official statement yielded no response, even the customer desk declined to comment.

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Cellulant was founded in 2004 by Nigeria’s Akinboro with Ken Njoroge as Co-CEO from Kenya and in 2018, it received the largest investment in the history of fintech companies in Africa with dominant market position across 12 Sub-Saharan countries – Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Zambia, Mozambique, Tanzania, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Malawi.

According to Crunchbase, the company had its first Venture Capital Round on October 1, 2011, raising $1.5m.

It raised $5.5 million in Series B funding on February 17, 2014. The largest money ($47.5) was raised on May 14, 2018, in its Series C funding.

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