Best digital currency exchange platforms in Africa

The African continent has embraced a variety of digital currencies including stablecoins, mostly due to the volatility of local currencies.

A significant amount of cryptocurrency trading takes place in key markets on the continent, in places such as Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe, just to name a few. The trading volumes especially in the P2P markets are significant enough to bring the spotlight on the continent. Africa has been dubbed the hotbed for blockchain-based innovations, where most key players see the different use cases being highly applicable and in-demand in these emerging and developing economies.

African countries rank among those countries with high levels of interest and where adoption looks promising – all thanks to blockchain technology.

People invest, trade and transact using these cryptocurrencies. However, the number one cryptocurrency in Africa and beyond is Bitcoin.

This article outlines the main crypto exchanges in Africa where people can buy and sell Bitcoin. These include ChangellyCoinbaseKraken, Coinmama, BinancePaxful, Cex.io, LocalCryptos, Remitano and eToro. 

LocalBitcoins: This is a peer-to-peer exchange which has an escrow service where individuals can buy and sell bitcoins easily and quickly. People use in-person trades which do not require personal information. It operates in almost every country on the African continent including Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa and Uganda. It accepts various methods of payment such as PayPal, credit or debit card, Western Union and wire transfer. More significantly, people can use various use currencies like USD, EUR, GHS, NGN and TZS on this platform. 

In order to sell bitcoins, do the following:

  • Register an account at Local Bitcoins.
  • Fund your wallet at LocalBitcoins.com wallet.
  • Create an advertisement. After that process, your funds are held in the escrow account. 
  • Once a buyer shows interest you receive an SMS showing a payment made. 
  • You confirm the transaction by releasing the bitcoins. 

Remitano: This is also a peer-to-peer platform where people in any country on the African content can buy and sell bitcoins. Apart from bitcoins, participants can also buy and sell over 10 cryptocurrencies. The acceptable payment methods include Bank transfer, Debit/Credit card and other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum. 

Here is how you can start buying and selling bitcoins at Remitano:

  • Open a free account at on Remitano.
  • Submit your phone number and complete the KYC.
  • Secure your account using a two-factor authenticator.
  • Identify your cryptocurrency wallets, including the Bitcoin one. 
  • Once all these are set up, you can buy or sell bitcoins.

Paxful: This is yet another peer-to-peer crypto exchange that allows people from most African countries, including Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya to buy and sell bitcoins. Like the case of LocalBitcoins, there is escrow service. Paxful has many payment methods and it supports different currencies, for example, BTC, USD, EUR, GHS, NGN, KES and TZS. 

The method of selling bitcoins is similar to that of LocalBitcoins. 

Here is how someone can buy bitcoins:

The first step is to deposit money or any other cryptocurrency into your wallet.

After that, search for offers as shown in the picture. 

The list of offers immediately appears. 

From the list, select a seller by clicking “Buy.”

LocalCryptos: This is also a peer to peer exchange. The buying and selling methods are similar to that of LocalBitcoins and Remitano. The payment methods include Bank transfer M-PESA, SEPA Transfer, Airtel Mobile, using various currencies and cryptocurrencies like NGN, EUR, TZS, GHS, BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC and DASH. 

In order for you to start trading, visit https://localcryptos.com and register. 

The buying process is similar to the one explained under Paxful and the selling one like the one discussed under LocalBitcoins. 

Yellowcard: Yellowcard exchange operates in several African countries including Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa and Botswana. The good thing about Yellowcard is that it allows users to buy bitcoins using their local bank accounts. Therefore, the main payment methods are cash, bank transfer and debit cards. Furthermore, it accepts different currencies which include BTC, NGN, USD and TZS. 

To start buying and selling bitcoins, open an account at https://www.yellowcard.io.

Coindirect: This is one of the biggest exchange in Africa, operating in 24 countries including Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and more.  It uses different payment methods. For example, in South Africa it uses ZAR deposits, SEPA, PayPal and TransferWise. Above this, it accepts different currencies and cryptocurrencies, like NGN, EUR, BTC, ETH, LTC, EOS and DAI. To open an account, go to coindirect.com.

Other exchanges

There are more cryptocurrency exchanges operating in Africa than we have discussed. Some other prominent exchanges are eToroCoinmama, BitPesa, CEX.io, Belfrics, Bit2Me and Binance

Therefore, every prospective bitcoin buyer or seller should research and choose the platforms that cater to their preferences. 

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