Ukheshe: Enabling seamless and scalable payment solutions
Clayton Hayward, CEO, Ukheshe

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Clayton Hayward, CEO

Ukheshe: Enabling seamless and scalable payment solutions

Passionate about revolutionizing the financial services landscape in Africa and other emerging markets is how Clayton Hayward, Co-Founder and CEO of Ukheshe is driving innovation across their markets. The leading fintech company is spearheading digital transformation across the continent. Under Hayward’s leadership, Ukheshe has disrupted traditional banking models by leveraging cutting-edge technology and mobile platforms to empower individuals and businesses with seamless financial solutions.

Clayton and his executive team are on a mission to foster financial inclusion and provide access to innovative solutions that aim to improve traditional financial services, unlocking unprecedented economic opportunities for millions. Drawing on his extensive expertise in the fintech industry, he has built a talented team of professionals and forged strategic partnerships to expand their reach and deliver transformative solutions. Ukheshe has created a robust ecosystem that facilitates secure payments, digital banking, and merchant services, facilitating economic growth and empowering individuals to participate fully in the digital economy. In an interview, Clayton speaks on an array of topics. Excerpts:

Conception of Ukheshe

“Our origin story began with a simple question as to how can we make digital payments accessible to the unbanked in South Africa” says this passionate entrepreneur. Bringing digital payments to the unbanked is a deceptively humble proposal with profound implications for financial inclusion across the globe where socioeconomic inequalities persist to the detriment of growth and innovation. “But as we grew, a much broader issue became apparent. Many financial institutions didn’t have the digital means to engage with their customers in new and convenient ways. We saw a clear opportunity to make an even bigger impact as a B2B fintech provider of bespoke solutions that enables banks, fintech’s and MNOs to provide payment solutions to their customers,” he adds.

FinTech’s- challenges galore

Says Clayton that fintech is not a new concept, but over the past few years it has developed to become the fast-growing industry in the world. “The pandemic acted as a catalyst for the adoption of fintech solutions as consumers and businesses adapted to a new way of living. FinTech’s with their agile and technology driven solutions, were well positioned to meet the evolving needs of individuals and businesses during this time. But with growth, comes the challenges of maintaining it.”

In the post-pandemic world, fintech’s need to be able to navigate the challenges and risks associated with their rapid growth and innovation. Some of the pain points that fintech’s need to address include the following:

  • Robust risk management
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Customer trust and education
  • Collaboration and partnerships
  • Continuous innovation and adaptability
  • Talent acquisition and retention

Ukheshe Solution

Eclipse is a cloud-based API platform and associated admin console that enables banks, fintechs and telcos to build flexile and compelling financial services propositions for their clients. “We developed the Eclipse API to assist in the development and enablement of other businesses aspirations. With our API platform we can offer several digital banking offerings such as Banking as a service, wallet as a service, Payments as a service among others, which can continue to improve the customer experiences, reduce costs and enhance revenue streams for our customers.”

Leadership traits

Being a visionary, decisive and innovative and resilient leader are three important traits of a successful leader, says Clayton. “You need to be able to think strategically about the future of your business. With Ukheshe we considered the changes in the payments and fintech industry, and set clear, ambitious yet achievable directions for our team. You should be able to analyze situations swiftly and accurately, leveraging the information available to you and consulting with your team where necessary. Fintech is a rapidly evolving field. As a leader in this industry, you should encourage innovation and creativity, and always be on the lookout for new opportunities and technologies that could improve your products and services.”

Words of advice

“Within the fintech environment, don’t underestimate the cost and time the impact of compliance has, and always aim to learn patience fast. Constant learning and adaptability are key, the ability and willingness to continuously acquire new knowledge and skills in the fast-paced and ever-evolving world we live in, will be the biggest driver of your business. And lastly success is rarely achieved overnight, it often involves overcoming obstacles, facing failures, and persisting through difficulties.”

Clayton Hayward, CEO

Company: Ukheshe


Management: Clayton Hayward, CEO

Founded Year: 2018

Headquarters: London, UK

Description: Ukheshe is a market-leading fintech enabler with a focus on changing the world of payments through the accessibility of disparate technologies. Through our Eclipse API, and by partnering with banks, telcos, financial services providers, we enable financial inclusion for their customers by providing tailor-made payment solutions.

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