Ndovu, the elephant, is synonymous with strength, empathy, and wisdom.
Whenever an elephant is mentioned in casual (or even, serious) conversation, one is guaranteed to either hear about their majesty or incredible levels of emotional intelligence.
In the animal kingdom, they live together in herds and they closely collaborate for the benefit of not only the individual but also of the wider group.
So what inspired this mission?
The founders of Ndovu were keen to create a community that promotes financial literacy and that provides a clear path to financial wellness. This grouping of folks, for all intents and purposes, is a herd
…. who are these founders then?
Radhika, our Chief Executive Officer, returned home to Kenya in 2020 and was eager to put her savings to work. She had spent 11+ years working in London advising global companies on how to invest to make a profit and create wealth. She honed her skills at Blackrock (the world’s largest asset manager with, at last count, over $9.5 trillion under management). She was curious to see what options were available in the local market.
She learned that there is currently $85bn (Yes, with a B!) sitting in savings accounts across Africa. While this is an impressive figure (the result of multiple initiatives to bank-the-unbanked), it presents a massive problem.
African countries have high rates of inflation which means that the saver is losing the value of their money every single day. Saving alone is not enough. To beat the hidden tax of inflation, this cash has to be invested.
Something had to be done.
It was at this time that she met Rogito “Ro”, our Chief Commercial Officer. Ro is a financial services veteran with 17+ years of experience in capital markets. He was a senior executive at the Nairobi Securities Exchange where he conceived M-Akiba, the ground-breaking, mobile-based Government bond that allowed Kenyans, for the first time, to invest micro-amounts in infrastructure bonds.
The duo immediately knew that technology was key to their ambition to avail financial education and investment opportunities to everyone in Africa.
…. and then they were three
Gianpaolo De Biase “GP”, our Chief Technology Officer, was drawn to the mission and eagerly joined as a co-founder. He brings 20+ years of successful experience in building and scaling technology and is the brains behind the product.
On that day, a dream team was assembled!
Validating the need for Ndovu
“A good idea is about ten percent and implementation and hard work, and luck is 90 percent.”
Radhika and Ro spent significant time speaking to people to understand what was needed from an investment partner.
We learned three key reasons as to why folks don’t actively invest:
- They don’t know where to start and they lack both financial education and advice.
- For those who previously tried investing, they found that the process was complicated, with tedious paperwork (in triplicate) and the need to physically go to the brick and mortar facilities to open an account.
- They lacked the avenue to invest in their favourite global companies, assets and preferred sectors.
On the back of these empirical findings, Ndovu was formed.
How are we changing the conversation on financial wellness in African homes?
Ndovu is a micro-investment platform that provides easy access to financial markets. Most of us want to invest. We just don’t know how to get started and it all seems so complicated!
At Ndovu, we help you get started by providing digital advice and recommending an investment that meets your unique investing style. If you’re completely new to investing, simply tell us what you’re saving for (goal), how much you would need to achieve that goal and we’ll break down how much you would need to invest on a monthly basis.
Our team of experts will then invest on your behalf to give you the returns that match your investing style.
We give you access to both local and global funds, all from the comfort of your home (Hello Tesla ? ?How are you doing Formula One ?? ). By using a smart combination of cutting-edge technology and expert financial advisors, we provide you with the right tools to help you build wealth.
We are focused on responsible investing.
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Ndovu is an online platform owned and run by Waanzilishi Capital Limited, an investment adviser licensed by the Capital Markets Authority (Kenya).