Flutterwave Shuts Down Barter Virtual Card, Focuses on Remittance

Flutterwave said it is shutting down its Barter service, a virtual card platform launched in 2017 to support the fintech company’s growth drive. According to a statement, Flutterwave will now concentrate efforts on its remittance and enterprise business segments, which have proven more successful.

The company revealed that its decision to sunset Barter services in the market followed a market analysis that revealed evolving customer needs and shifting trends. While acknowledging the importance of retail services, Flutterwave emphasises its current priority has shifted to optimising solutions for businesses and remittance.

Barter’s closure comes after a period of challenges. The service faced downtime in 2022 due to an update from its card partner, Union54. This Zambian issuer was unfortunately targeted by a significant chargeback fraud attempt of $1.2 billion.

Barter users encountered issues with platform stability and card rejections from merchants like Netflix, Facebook, PayPal, and Apple Music.  These problems likely contributed to the decision to discontinue the service.

Barter held an important place in the Nigerian fintech sector. Launched in 2017, it was among the first to offer Nigerians the ability to make international payments. The platform allowed users to create virtual dollar cards for online transactions.

However, compared to Flutterwave’s enterprise services, which generate the majority of the company’s revenue, Barter’s contribution was minimal. While Flutterwave processes billions of dollars in transactions, Barter only accounted for roughly 1% of that volume.

Flutterwave appears optimistic about its future, focusing on its remittance products, Send and Swap. These services aim to capture a sizeable share of Africa’s $54 billion remittance market, although their current progress is still in the watch.

Barter is a storied product. When it launched in 2017, it was one of the first tech startups to offer Nigerians the ability to make international payments. #Flutterwave Shuts Down Barter Virtual Card, Focuses on Remittance Juli Plc Spikes 32.5%, Market Value Nears N1bn

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