American Express Introduces Nigeria's Inaugural Business Card

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On Thursday, American Express Co. launched its first business credit card in Nigeria in collaboration with local neobank O3 Capital Nigeria Limited, potentially expanding access to dollar transactions in the West African country.

For international transactions, the business card comes with a spending limit of $10,000 and offers a repayment window of up to 45 days.

In a statement, Mohammed Badi, the President of Global Network Services at Amex, highlighted that the launch of the first-ever American Express Business Card in the most populous African country will provide an additional avenue to aid local businesses in accomplishing their growth aspirations.

For personal and household use, other O3 Capital-Amex cards will come with spending limits of $10,000 to $20,000.

Badi also stated that Amex aims to extend its presence in Africa to 42 countries from 30 currently, due to the rising demand from consumers and small businesses for the company's cards.

Nigeria has been grappling with a local dollar scarcity for years, causing occasional sharp fluctuations in the naira, which has lost 65 percent of its value against the greenback since foreign exchange reforms in mid-2023.

The Central Bank of Nigeria is making efforts to attract foreign investors to enhance dollar inflows and is urging banks to independently acquire the greenback to alleviate demand constraints.

Despite this, they can be challenging to locate, as most of the nation's lenders have ceased or restricted the use of naira credit cards for international payments and limited card issuance to wealthy customers.

The Chief Executive Officer, O3 Capital Nigeria Limited, Abimbola Pinheiro, highlighted that the O3-Amex card tackles the issue of queuing at banks for business travel allowance and personal travel allowance.

According to his statement, O3 is set to issue 16,000 American Express cards by the end of 2024 and further extend the offering to about a million cards over the next five years.

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