Congratulations to VC4Africa member Saya, acquired by US based mobile services company Kirusa!
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“In launching Saya, we wanted to create a world class product that was made by Africans, for Africans,” says Saya’s CEO Robert Lamptey.
Robert Lamptey and Badu Boahen are the two Ghanaian entrepreneurs who founded Saya in 2011. They are both graduates of the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) program in Accra. Saya provides a chat application that cuts the costs of SMS and also gives low-end phones users access to functionalities such as Facebook chat, group discussions, location-based chat, and exchange of multi-media. Today their apps are used in over 35 countries worldwide. Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, India, and Indonesia are it’s biggest markets.
Kirusa announced they acquired Saya’s technology, intellectual property and workforce, which will now be working on Kirusa’s mobile applications. Saya’s Robert Lamptey shares: “Joining forces with Kirusa is a natural and exciting next step for our team. We remain focused on our goal of placing this technology into the hands of and empowering millions of mobile subscribers. We look forward to realizing this vision together with Kirusa.”
Kirusa, headquartered in New Jersey in the US, and with offices in Delhi, Bangalore and Lagos, provides mobile carriers in emerging markets with a portfolio of mobile services. The company works with more than 30 carriers in Africa, the Middle East, South and South East Asia, Eastern Europe, and services more than 80 million mobile subscribers every month.
“We are thrilled to have Saya’s talented team join Kirusa,” says Kirusa’s CEO Inderpal Singh Mumick. “The biggest impact of mobile in Africa is yet to come. We believe there are advantages to building products specifically for this region and have made the strategic decision to acquire Saya in line with that thinking.”
Neal Hansch, Managing Director of the MEST Incubator program, adds: “Having known Kirusa’s management for years and supported Saya since its launch, MEST couldn’t be more supportive of Saya becoming a part of a company led by such industry visionaries”. “It was a true pleasure working with Kirusa on the acquisition. The professionalism and understanding displayed by their team during this process has been exceptional.”
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