The Nigerian-born entrepreneur behind ‘Shopify of banking’ that just received $100k from Google

Abu Mubarik October 03, 2022
Joseph Akintolayo. Image via Linkedin

Meet Joseph Akintolayo, he is the founder of Deposits, a fintech startup that helps financial organizations provide more digital tools to their community. The startup offers plug-and-play banking features for community banks, credit unions, and other financial brands.

Akintolayo refers to his startup as “the Shopify of banking.” The company works with 13 financial customers and according to the 32-year-old, the company will be profitable in 13 months all things being equal. Dellas News notes that Deposits made about $1 million in revenue last year and it is expected to double that this year. 

“I can’t get through my emails with a whole team of people,” he said. “We’re selling water in the desert for community banks and credit unions that are at risk of closing their doors.”

Deposits was among the few black-owned startups that were recently selected for Google’s 2022 Black Founders Fund program that awards entrepreneurs $100,000 as well as a stamp of approval. The company’s selection came on the heels of successfully raising $5 million in a pre-seed funding round led by ATX Venture Partners.

Akintolayo grew up between Nigeria and Arlington but settled permanently in Arlington with his family when he was 10. He went to Holy Rosary Catholic School (now St. Joseph Catholic School) with enough credits to make him a sophomore in college.

He graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering. It appears Akintolayo studied biomedical engineering to prove a point that he could study something difficult in university. 

“It was more of a miscalculation,” Akintolayo said about studying biomedical engineering. However, when it came for him to start his first company, it was in the field of biomedical engineering. He started BioSculpt, in 2013 to 3D print medical devices and prosthetics.

“It crashed and burned. It was an 18-month flash in the pan. I really should’ve made it a software startup, but it was hardware-focused,” he noted.

Akintolayo said he was always going to be an entrepreneur because of his health condition. He has sickle cell amenia. According to him, his sister died from the disease.

“I used to live in the hospital,” he said. “In any given year, I’d be in a hospital bed for two months out of the year.”

According to Dallas News, every five weeks, Akintolayo receives treatments at UT Southwestern in the form of blood infusion. According to the platform, he goes in to get about 12 bags of new blood, which takes four to five hours. 

The nature of his health condition practically makes it impossible for him to work for a company other than his own. “It’s been a game-changer,” he said about being his own boss. “Because of that, I’ve been able to build a life so I don’t live at the hospital anymore.”

Akintolayo said he would like to see high school stadiums co-branded with his company in the future, Dallas Business Journal reported. 

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: October 3, 2022


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