Start-up e-Doley Finance takes BGFI Bank to court
e-Doley Finance, a fintech start-up in Gabon, is taking a major African financial services group, BGFI Bank, to court in France and Gabon. The fintech firm is accusing BGFI of stealing its mobile payments tech, reports local media outlet Jeune Afrique.
e-Doley Finance and BGFI started working working together in 2013 on a profit-sharing basis (per transaction made). Two years later, the bank launched its own mobile offering, BGFI Mobile, using the technology that was patented by e-Doley Finance, the start-up claims.
Ernest A. Tewelyo, CEO of e-Doley Finance, says the two parties initiated a test phase for a mobile banking solution in Q1 2015, at the end of which the bank offered to buy the technology and cease the earlier profit-sharing arrangement. Tewelyo said he needed to think about it. In December that year the bank officially launched BGFI Mobile and unilaterally stopped the agreement with e-Doley Finance.
Tewelyo accuses the bank of taking his technology without paying him. He is now suing the bank for tens of billions of CFA francs.