TechCabal Daily – Pulling out for safety ⚠

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THE DAY IN REVIEW

1. FAWRY EXPANDS ITS SERVICES

Egypt’s e-payment platform and first tech unicorn, Fawry, has announced plans to broaden its services by establishing a consumer finance company called Fawry Consumer Finance. This move was first approved by its board earlier in the year, and the announcement was made on Thursday with an initial capital of £10 million ($636,000 invested already.

Fawry currently offers financial solutions through partner banks and financial service entities, but it has received the necessary license from the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) in Egypt and this company will be fully owned by Fawry and its subsidiaries. 

With this platform, the company will offer its customers and merchants more options at checkout and even more convenient access to credit options like Buy Now Pay Later services.

Fawry will directly launch this new company in 2022.

2. AIRCART LAUNCHES DIGITAL SALES PLATFORM


Kenya-based startup Aircart has launched its full-featured platform to help users sell digital products with smart links.

Aircart is a digital storefront for content creators. With it, users can upload products, add preferred payment methods, and receive shareable links they can earn from, all without registration. 

The startup was co-founded by Shadrack Apollo, Wyclif Okwiri, and Hassan Kombo and has been making upward strides since its beta launch in June. The platform has plans to launch an NFT marketplace and add ticketing and merchandise sales to its platform.

Aircart charges a 10% commission on sales made using its links and, according to Disrupt Africa, hundreds of users have used the online service so far.

Speaking of the platform, co-founder Shadrack Apollo said that Aircart’s current key markets are Kenya, Nigeria, India, and the US. “These four countries account for more than 90% of our user base,” he said. He also mentioned that the current focus of the app is the African market, but there are plans to expand to more countries in the future.

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3. MORE PULL-OUTS FROM THE CONSUMER ELECTRONIC SHOW


Microsoft is the latest company to pull out of in-person attendance at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES) scheduled for January 5-8, 2022, in Las Vegas. It joins a growing list of companies opting out of physical appearances at the annual trade show over COVID-19 concerns.

In a statement, the company said, “After reviewing the latest data on the rapidly evolving COVID environment, Microsoft has decided not to participate in person at CES 2022. We will continue with our digital CES plans on both the Microsoft Partner Innovation Experience and Automotive Press Kit, where we’ll highlight our partners’ newest devices, solutions, and innovations. We look forward to continuing to participate remotely.”

COVID-19 cases have continued growing in the US with the latest Omicron variant spiking during the holidays, and this is a major concern for attendees of the show. After two years of virtual events, CES organizers insist that the 2022 show will go on with both virtual access and physical booths, and attendees and exhibitors will be required to show proof of vaccination.

Other big tech exhibitors that have said they will also no longer attend include Lenovo, T-Mobile, Amazon, Google, Meta, TikTok, Pinterest, and Hisense. So far, 42 exhibitors have pulled out.

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