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Sevenfold Trading, one of the local startups digitizing traditional peer-to-peer saving groups with its app My Ekub, is expanding its service to include public equb groups.

My Ekub, which has been providing its digital equb management system for private equbs for the past eight months decided to venture into public groups after users’ demand.

“We’ve managed to create a platform that respects cultural norms,” says Tsion Solomon, co-founder and Marketing Manager of My Ekub. “We don’t interfere with private equbs; we simply provide them with the system, and it continues to be regulated by the equb judge chosen by the participants.”

Akofada (DFS Ethiopia)

Public equbs are grouped into 103 members and payments are collected for twenty days.  On the 21st day, a lottery determines 15 winners who will be awarded the collected money. Winners must visit the office to collect their prize money in person, along with their guarantor, in case of defaulting on payments

According to Tsion, there are currently 20 active private equbs with over 1,000 members on My Ekub. Additionally, “80 private equbs have been hosted on the platform in the last five months”.

Sevenfold Technologies was co-founded in 2023 by Temesgen Atnaw, a computer science graduate from the University of the District of Columbia, and Tsion, who has a background in marketing.

“Equb is not just about saving money and winning; it’s a community activity,” says Tsion. “It’s more about communicating and socializing with the community. People can take the collected money without winning the lottery in case of an emergency, as long as the others agree.” She further explained that My Ekub has provided an option on the platform that enables users to sell and buy their winning number.

Tsion told Shega that people can make payments through the bank accounts provided by the platform, adding that they are in the process of enabling payments through telebirr and Chapa.

In the newly added public equb groups, users can deposit 300, 500, 700, or 1000 birr daily, with the potential to win up to 100,000 birr depending on their deposit amount. The startup charges between 2.9 and 4% service fee from winners.

My Ekub has over 5k downloads on both the Play Store and App Store. Digital Equb, Virtual Equb, and eQUB are some of its competitors in the digital equb management space.

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Daniel, a writer and radio host, has a keen interest in technology. Additionally, he has supported various organizations by enhancing their digital presence in his role as a social media manager.