Zita Agwunobi is the visionary behind Iverify.ng, a cutting-edge B2B platform specializing in background checks and digital identity verification services. Her ingenious solution simplifies the onboarding process while fortifying business authentication, leading to heightened insights, streamlined efficiency, and well-informed decision-making.
With a remarkable span of over 17 years in compliance, Zita Agwunobi has honed her expertise, excelling in due diligence areas such as Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC). Her acumen extends to Business Analytics, Management, and Data Analytics, underscoring her multifaceted skill set.
Zita Agwunobi plays a pivotal role at the helm of Iverify.ng. She steers the ship of corporate and regulatory compliance, spearheads strategic initiatives, and skillfully manages Iverify’s esteemed partnership network and key stakeholder relationships.
With a track record of accomplishment and a relentless dedication to excellence, Zita Agwunobi is at the forefront of transforming how businesses approach identity verification and onboarding, revolutionizing processes for a smarter, more secure future.
You’ve made a significant impact in Digital Identity Security, especially in this part of the world. Could you share the moment that inspired you to embark on this innovative journey with Iverify.ng?
I’ll typically say that for me, I’d call it the “Adventures of a Charge and Bail Lawyer”.
The footprints of Iverify were deeply embedded in my daily legal activity: from going to court, defending people and being on both sides of the scale in litigation, all requiring day-to-day information to validate data and prove one’s identity.
Most times, legal tasks and responsibilities bordered on documentation/ paperwork: you need to establish facts and prove things, and every day I was faced with lack of access to centralized information, where information could be verified, and sometimes, information could be in silos, and people had limited access to that.
Iverify was built to help people have access to this information, initially to help ourselves by taking on the job of verification and due diligence and to get by milestones, and then, subsequently, to extend support to organizations who needed to get things verified swiftly.
As an Accelerator Mentor, Google for Startups Africa, you’re empowering other startups. What are some challenges you faced while mentoring aspiring (female) founders, and what steps did you take to overcome them?
Generally speaking, Mentors face a myriad of challenges, one of which is the misconception around mentoring being one-sided, there are unhealthy expectations that puts the mentor in the seat of “Life Saver”, whereas, in the real sense, it is a two-way street; the mentor benefits from the mentee and vice versa. It is a mutual relationship where they help each develop and deepen their experiences.
We overcome this by establishing and framing mentoring expectations from the get-go.
With Iverify.ng enhancing security and streamlining identity-related processes, what ways do you envision the platform impacting lives in the future?
Iverify.ng’s potential impact on future lives lies in fostering greater security and efficiency across various sectors.
By offering robust identity verification solutions, we can reduce fraud and data breaches, enabling safer transactions and services.
Our platform’s streamlined processes may enhance trust, unlock new opportunities, and empower individuals in a digitally connected world.
Balancing a successful career and life can be challenging. How do you unwind and have fun after a busy day of leading Iverify.ng?
If I told you, you won’t believe it. I unwind on some nights with a glass of wine while looking at silly memes shared by my very good silly friend.
As a trailblazer in a male-dominated industry, what advice do you have for other women looking to break gender stereotypes and make their mark?
I have questions, rather than advice:
What inspires you? What are you passionate about? Are you willing to show up daily for what you are passionate about?
Ignore the bias. Do you regardless!
Launching Iverify.ng in 2019 was a bold move! Can you tell us about any fun rituals you and your team had during the early days of the platform’s development?
It was more of a quest for survival, than it was fun.
On Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, we woke up and went into the streets for marketing, just about 2-3 of us. We’d resume and when schools close, we’d park right outside and share handbills.
We’d get up to car parks, shopping malls, industries, public places, just trying to validate our business, market our services and aim at conversion to sales.
In hindsight, we would agree with the use of the word “fun”.
As a visionary Tech-preneur, what’s one piece of advice you’d give to someone just starting their journey in the technology space?
Embrace customer discovery survey!
That which you believe in and have created a solution for, test it; with the right market and the right audience!