Global cryptocurrency exchange FTX is teaming up with digital currency exchange AZA Finance to boost the adoption of Web 3 and digital currencies across Africa, according to a press release on Wednesday (March 16).
Co-founded in 2019 by CEO Sam Bankman-Fried and CTO Gary Wang, FTX is headquartered in Nassau, Bahamas and recently closed a $400 million Series C funding round that gave the startup a valuation of $32 billion.
Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya and launched in 2013, AZA Finance was founded by CEO Elizabeth Rossiello. The company launched Africa’s first digital currency exchange as well as the first digital currency exchange worldwide run by a woman.
AZA offers foreign exchange, payments and financial services in 10 African markets and has processed more than £200 billion in global transactions across more than 115 countries in over 300 currency pairs.
Rossiello said AZA Finance will help FTX expand across Africa and pointed to the CEO’s pledge to the “ethical expansion” within Web3 as being unprecedented.
“As we built Africa’s largest platform for trading African currencies, one thing has been clear — that this continent is the future of global, digital economies. After serving these booming enterprises for years, we know that the next generation of users, creators and builders for the Web3 economy is undoubtedly African,” Rossiello said.
“And as one of Africa’s first FinTechs, operating for over 8 years with a team of more than 200 people from Dakar to Lagos to Kampala, we have the deepest knowledge of how to build a truly continental platform. We look forward to supporting FTX’s mission to bring Web3 truly worldwide,” she added.
With digitally-native dynamic markets, Africa is well-positioned for the growth of Web 3 and metaverse economies. The population on the continent is forecasted to double through 2050, with two-thirds of that growth anticipated in urban areas. Africa is expected to have one of the world’s biggest workforces as soon as 2030, according to the press release.
“We look forward to working closely with them [Aza], and the local regulatory bodies, to bring all of our products and services to the African market in a compliant way. Additionally, we look forward to doing our part locally by supporting efforts by artists & creators in the community,” said Bankman-Fried.