Nairobi — Kenyan start-up Empower Smart Limited has launched the region’s first fully automated digital escrow app in a bid to streamline the e-commerce industry.
Founder of Empower Smart Limited, Peter Muraya, said the app dubbed “Empower Smart App” will improve commerce in the region and globally by protecting buyers and sellers from scams through its suite of payment products. under Empower Wallet.
An escrow is a financial and legal agreement designed to protect buyers and sellers in a transaction. For a fee, an independent third party withholds payment until each fulfills their responsibilities in the transaction.
With a digital escrow payment, the Seller will only access the funds received when the Buyer remotely unlocks it from their app once satisfied with the delivered product.
“Online shopping scams will now be a thing of the past, as you can now send a locked prepayment to the seller. The money leaves the buyer’s wallet and is temporarily held in digital escrow until the proceeds are The buyer then unlocks the payment from their app and the seller can now access and withdraw the previously locked funds. A disgruntled customer can request the release of the locked funds from the app,” he said, adding that the app is available on Google Play Store.
The company is targeting the growing e-commerce sector in Kenya, which is hit hard by scammers.
“Empower Smart helps create exponential growth in the e-commerce space and build trust in online transactions and large transactions like land and cars. This uses its digital engagement payment platform innovative and truly groundbreaking feature available on the Empower Smart app,” he explained.
The move comes as the Kenyan government has issued a warning about soaring cases of online fraud, warning Kenyans to be extremely vigilant when engaging in digital transactions.
Last year, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DCI), George Kinoti, advised Kenyans to be on the lookout for well-crafted fraudulent scams as the holiday season approaches.