Bank Review: Kuda Bank—Everything you need to know
Founded in 2016 by Babs Ogundeyi and Musty Mustapha, Kuda bank is widely regarded as Nigeria's first digital-only bank
Kuda bank, also known as “The bank of the free” is a digital bank that offers banking services to individuals and businesses in Nigeria.
Founded in 2016 by Babs Ogundeyi and Musty Mustapha, Kuda bank has an estimated value of $500 million, making it the 7th most valuable bank in Nigeria. Kuda bank is one of the few banks in Nigeria that allows people to open an account online. The bank also offers free budget, savings, and overdraft features to its 3 million registered users.
Since 2021, Kuda has signed notable influencers and public personalities like Erica Nlewedim, Dorothy Bachor, Fireboy DML (Adedamola Adefolahan), and Liquorose (Roseline Omokhoa Afije) as its ambassadors.
This article covers the services offered by Kuda, how to use its services, and how to open a Kuda bank account.
History of Kuda bank
Kuda bank started as Kudi money, an online platform that offered small-term loans to individuals and businesses. In 2019, Kudimoney rebranded to Kuda and raised a pre-seed fund of $1.6 million after it received its banking licence from The Central Bank of Nigeria.
As part of its rebranding, Kuda bank switched from its lending model to a banking model similar to traditional banks. Kuda’s popularity grew during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdown because people did not need to visit a physical location to open a Kuda account or resolve their banking issues.
In 2021, Kuda raised $55 million and crossed 1 million app downloads.
Types of accounts offered by Kuda bank
Kuda bank offers products and services that people can use to save, borrow money and track their expenses. Its services are divided into 2 broad groups: personal accounts and business accounts.
Kuda's services are available to only Nigerians, but it has plans to expand to other countries like Ghana, Uganda, and the UK soon.
Kuda personal account
A kuda personal account is suitable for individuals. With a Kuda personal account, you can save, budget, spend, and borrow money all in one place.
You also get a free Visa debit card you can use online and offline. Kuda personal accounts allow people to:
- Earn 15% per annum interest on fixed savings and 10% per annum interest on flexible savings
- Enjoy 25 free transfers every month to other banks in Nigeria
- Access uncollateralized funds with 0.3% daily interest
- Track their spending and expenses
- Avoid maintenance, SMS, or card fees
- Download their account statement anytime they want.
Kuda business account
A Kuda business account is suitable for business owners as they can sign up without paperwork in minutes.
Kuda business accounts offer business owners the option to:
- Schedule and make bulk payments to vendors, employees, service providers, etc.
- Enjoy 25 free transfers every month to other Nigerian bank accounts.
- Track their business expenses
- Manage different bank accounts from one place.
You can learn more and open a Kuda business here.
How to open a Kuda bank account
Kuda bank is a digital bank, which means you do not need to visit a physical branch to open an account. To open a Kuda account, you need:
- To be at least 16 years old
- A valid phone number
- A valid email address.
If you meet the requirements, download the Kuda bank app from the Playstore or Appstore. The app is compatible with all devices. After installing the app, simply follow the prompts on the screen. You would be required to input your age, email address, and phone number.
Kuda personal bank accounts have 3 tiers: tier 0, tier 1, and tier 3. New accounts automatically fall under tier 0, but you have to upgrade your account to enjoy the full benefits and features of a Kuda account.
You can learn more about the limits of each tier here. To upgrade your Kuda account, you would need to prove your identity. You can do this by uploading a government-issued ID, your residential address, your BVN, and a video of yourself.
How to use Kuda bank’s save and budget feature
You can earn up to 15% interest when you save money with Kuda bank. To use this feature, simply:
- Open the Kuda bank app
- Tap Savings on your account dashboard
- Tap Save Now
- Choose your savings plan and follow the prompts on the screen.
Kuda bank offers flexible and fixed saving plans which earn an interest of 10% and 15% respectively. You can also use the spend+save feature to save a % of your money when you use your kuda account.
Kuda bank has a budget feature that you can use to track and control your expenses. To use this feature, simply:
- Open the Kuda bank app
- Tap Budget on your Kuda dashboard
- Tap Create A Budget
- Input the maximum amount you want to spend in different spending categories and tap Done
How to get a Kuda bank atm card
Kuda bank offers virtual and physical Visa cards to tier 1 and 3 account holders. Virtual Kuda cards are strictly used to pay for online transactions while physical Kuda cards can be used online and offline at ATMs and POS machines.
You do not need to visit a physical branch to request a Kuda atm card; All you need to do is request an ATM card from the Kuda bank app and the card would be delivered to your location.
Kuda atm cards are free but you need a minimum of 1,000 Naira in your kuda account before you can request for a card,
To get a physical Kuda card, simply:
- Open the Kuda bank app
- Tap Card on the bottom of your screen
- Tap Request A Card. Since we are requesting for a physical card, tap Get a Physical Card
- Create your card PIN then tap Next
- Input and confirm your delivery address
Your card will be delivered to your house, but the delivery time depends on your location.
Some Kuda bank users have reported that it took months for them to receive their Kuda ATMs.
To get a virtual Kuda card, simply:
- Open the Kuda bank app
- Tap Card at the bottom of your screen
- Tap Request A Card. Since we are requesting a virtual card, tap Get A Virtual Card
- Confirm you want a virtual card with your Kuda bank transaction PIN, fingerprint or Face ID
- Create a PIN for the virtual card and tap Okay
How to apply for a Kuda bank loan
Kuda offers uncollateralised, short-term loans known as overdrafts. Overdrafts are available to people that frequently use their Kuda accounts, but you can request to use overdrafts via the Kuda bank app if the option is not available to you.
Kuda’s overdrafts earn an interest of 0.3% daily and the loan is automatically paid back when you deposit money in your Kuda account. The great thing about Kuda’s overdraft is that you do not need to fill out a form or present collateral to get the loan.
To apply for Kuda’s overdrafts, simply:
- Open the Kuda bank app
- Tap Borrow on your dashboard
- Tap Get Your Overdraft. The maximum amount you can borrow would show on the screen
- Input the amount you want to borrow
- Confirm you are the one requesting for the overdraft with your transaction PIN, fingerprint or Face ID
- Tap Okay and the borrowed funds would be deposited in your Kuda account
How to add money to your Kuda microfinance bank account with a USSD code
You can add money to your Kuda account from other bank accounts via transfer, cash deposit, card, or USSD code. The USSD code depends on the bank you want to send the funds from, but you can see the code that works by using your bank’s transfer code to choose Kuda bank.
You can also check your bank’s USSD code by:
- Opening the Kuda bank app
- Tap Add Money. Since we want to send via USSD, choose the Add Money by USSD option.
- A list of codes for different banks will show on your screen. Tap your bank’s code
If you do not have access to the Kuda bank app, you can check for your bank’s code here:
Kuda’s USSD code for Zenith bank
*966*100*the kuda bank account number#
Kuda’s USSD code for GTBank
Kuda’s USSD code for Access bank
*901*100*the kuda bank account number#
Kuda’s USSD code for First Bank of Nigeria
*894*100*kuda bank account number#
Kuda’s USSD code for Wema bank
*945*kuda bank account number*100#
Kuda’s USSD code for Polaris bank
*833*100*Bank account number#
Frequently asked questions
Is Kuda bank registered with CBN
Yes, Kuda bank is registered with CBN as a microfinance bank. Its microfinance registration number is RC 796975. Kuda bank’s deposits are also insured by the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC).
Who owns Kuda bank
Kuda bank was founded by Babs Ogundeyi (Co-Founder & CEO) and Musty Mustapha (Co-Founder & CTO) in 2016. The bank also partners with reputable organisations like VISA, Target Global, and SBI holdings.
Where is Kuda bank located?
Kuda bank’s Nigerian headquarters is located at 151 Herbert Macaulay Way, Yaba, Lagos. Its London headquarters is located at 5 New Street Square, London, EC4A 3TW, UK.
Kuda’s customer care centre is located a few minutes away from its headquarters at E-center, 1-11 Commercial avenue Sabo Yaba 023401, Lagos. You can also visit Kuda’s website here.
Is Kuda bank safe
Yes, Kuda bank is safe and it has been in operation since 2016. Kuda bank is also insured by the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC).
How to delete my Kuda bank account
You can delete your Kuda bank account in the Kuda bank app. Simply open the Kuda bank app, go to your profile, and tap Close Account.
You can also send an account deletion request to Kuda Bank's help email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to check my BVN on the Kuda bank app
You can not check your BVN on the Kuda bank app. Dial *565*0# with the phone number you used to register for BVN to get your BVN number.
You can also register and get a BVN number by visiting the Kuda customer care centre at E-center, 1-11 Commercial avenue Sabo Yaba 023401, Lagos
Kuda bank customer care number
On weekdays, you can speak to a Kuda customer care agent by dialing 01 633 5832 between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm.
You can also chat with their customer care representatives in the app, send an email to email@example.com or find them on Twitter.
What are Kuda bank’s social media handles?
You can find Kuda bank on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn
How many Kuda bank branches are in Nigeria
Kuda bank is a digital bank, so it does not have physical branches.
Kuda bank tries and mostly succeeds to live up to its “bank of the free” tagline by making its product, services, and bank app very easy to use. With just an internet connection, you can open a Kuda account and start transacting in minutes.
Plus, it is one of the few banks in Nigeria that does not charge maintenance, SMS, or card fees. But Kuda bank is not without its faults; Its card and customer care services still need to be improved.
You can open a Kuda account by simply downloading the kuda bank app on your IOS or Android device.