Summary: The Kenyan government has withdrawn its fraud case against Nigerian fintech firm Flutterwave, clearing the company’s name. The charges were related to financial impropriety and the lack of a proper license to operate in the country. The government had previously frozen about $55 million of the company’s money, and it is unclear if Flutterwave will continue to operate in Kenya.
The Kenyan government has withdrawn the fraud case against Nigerian fintech startup, Flutterwave, clearing its name.
If you followed the story when it broke, you know the impact it had among several people and the way they viewed startups in the country. However, even before the case was withdrawn, it appears that the company’s shareholders’ faith remained steadfast.
It is not yet clear of Flutterwave will continue to operate in Kenya with this latest development as at the time, it was accused of not having the proper license to operate in the country.
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Likely, the first step would be the court ordering UBA, Access Bank, and others to unfreeze the fintech’s accounts, which it had frozen earlier while the case was ongoing. While the amounts varied, we estimate that the Kenyan government froze about $55 million of the company’s money.
In a Bloomberg article, citing a Kenyan High Court document and further verified by Flutterwave’s lawyer, the main charges were financial impropriety. There have been no comments from either parties to confirm what prompted the withdrawal — could it be that the government were unable to get enough evidence or a settlement was reached?
The fintech, which is also registered in San Francisco, has always maintained its innocence since the case began. In a statement in July 2022, it said:
“Claims of financial improprieties involving the company in Kenya are entirely false, and we have the records to verify this. Our anti-money laundering (AML) practices and operations are regularly audited by one of the big four firms. We remain proactive in our engagements with regulatory bodies to continue to stay compliant.”
Meanwhile, the government had claimed that one of the company’s bank accounts showed debits of $1.13 million which were from chargebacks, reversals, and refunds, an indication of card fraud activities.
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