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Interswitch is a payment processing company headquartered in Lagos.

HeadquartersLagos, Lagos State, Nigeria
Key people
Mitchell Elegbe (Group Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer)[1]

Akeem Lawal, Divisional CEO, Switching & Processing Group

Mike Ogbalu III, CEO, Verve International


Interswitch was founded in 2002 by Mitchell Elegbe.[2]

In 2010 two thirds of the company was sold to a consortium led by Helios Investment Partners.[3][1] In 2011 Interswitch took a 60 per cent stake in Bankom in Uganda.[1]

In 2013 Interswitch entered into an agreement for payment processing with Discover Financial Services.[4]

In September 2014 the company acquired a majority shareholding in Paynet Group, an East-African payments provider.[5]

In 2015 Interswitch launched a $10m investment fund for African start-ups in the payments sector.[6]

In February 2018, Interswitch unveiled its SPAK National Science Competition to promote and reward excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in Nigeria.[7]

Operations and subsidiariesEdit

Interswitch uses a ‘switching' infrastructure to connect the different banks in Nigeria and provides technology for ATM cards.[2] The company has over 11,000 ATMs on its network.[3]

Interswitch is the owner of Verve, Nigeria’s most used payment card, accounting for 18 million of the 25 million cards in circulation in the country.[2] Verve has also been launched in Kenya.[8]

Interswitch also owns Quickteller, an online payments platform; Retailpay, a mobile business management platform; and Smartgov, an identity management and e-payment infrastructure for state governments.

Interswitch has also very recently acquired VANSO and Selcom in Tanzania, a mobile-focused technology provider to banks. This new acquisition will result in VANSO’s mobile banking, SMS and security business lines being fully integrated into Interswitch’s digital commerce and technology operations in Nigeria, and across the Africa. [9][10][11]


  1. ^ a b c Onu, Emele (11 August 2011). "Nigeria's Interswitch Plans African Buys After Uganda Deal". Bloomberg. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Rice, Xan (18 August 2013). "Boom in plastic money as Nigeria spends, spends, spends". Financial Times. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  3. ^ a b Idem, Charles (November 2013). "Spreading tentacles across Africa" (PDF). Forbes Africa. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Yours To Discover: How Discover Financial Services Is A Direct Play On The U.S. Recovery". Seeking Alpha. 13 October 2014. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  5. ^ Akingbolu, Raheem (22 September 2014). "Interswitch Enters Partnership with Paynet Group". This Day. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  6. ^ "E-payment: Interswitch Nigeria launches a specialized investment fund". Jeune Afrique. 26 February 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  7. ^ "Interswitch unveils SPAK initiative to boost sciences". 22 February 2018. Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  8. ^ Aglionby, John (27 October 2015). "New payments service to launch in Kenya". Financial Times. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
  9. ^ Rice, Xan (15 December 2013). "Nigeria embraces cashless revolution". Financial Times. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  10. ^ Akingbolu, Raheem (13 November 2014). "Retailpay as a New Positioning Tool for Interswitch". This Day. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  11. ^ Akingbolu, Raheem (15 January 2014). "Interswitch Smartgov to boost Cross River's revenue". This Day. Retrieved 22 April 2015.