Nigeria Country Manager


Smile Identity’s mission is to make the benefits of a modern digital lifestyle universally accessible by expanding trust in underserved markets. To do this, we use computer vision, machine learning, human review and local integrations to provide a comprehensive KYC (Know Your Customer) and user identification solution for mobile-first frontier markets, beginning in Africa.

We are backed by US and African investors including Vinod Khosla, CRE Venture Capital, Savannah Fund, and PTB Ventures.

The Role

We are looking for an entrepreneurial leader to join as our first full-time Country Manager for Nigeria. This role will be responsible for the development and growth of a new business.

As the person in charge of what happens day to day in our first market, you must be an incredibly intelligent, ambitious and highly sought-after professional.

We need an executor. The Launch Manager is someone who is versatile, creative and incredibly resourceful. You must have experience getting things done, developing processes, and documenting what you learned. Whether you get up early, or stay up late, you always find a way to finish the job. You are a self-starter and work well independently, but you also know how important communication is when you’re working with a team, so you find it easy to stay in touch by using modern collaboration tools (Slack/Asana/Evernote/Dropbox/Google Docs), or project management software like Pivotal Tracker/Jira/Trello.

What you will do

  • Devise a 12 month strategy with the CEO and Director of Ops to build a $1M+ business
  • Grow enterprise customers, usage and revenues
  • Oversee customer support and local integrations with identity systems in Nigeria
  • Take responsibility for local relationships, documenting product feedback, and the Nigeria P&L
  • Work closely with our US Engineering team and Africa Ops Team to create a process for testing, launch and integration of new products with our enterprise customers
  • Manage local regulatory, government and media stakeholders as may be applicable
  • Find creative ways to take advantage of Nigeria’s regional or demographic strengths, be it in hiring, partnerships or distribution
  • As you grow usage and volumes, formulate and execute a hiring plan to support sales and customer service
  • Assist management to drive a metric driven culture
  • Create the Smile ID “Country Manager Playbook” — a set of learnings and best practices that can be used to launch subsequent new countries in Africa and beyond

As Country Manager, you'll be responsible for both targeted enterprise sales, product development feedback, service oversight, and local regulatory compliance -- all of these sit under your umbrella of responsibilities.

The Country Manager reports to Director of Operations, based in Cape Town, but will also spend substantial time working closely with the CEO to craft and execute on the strategy for Nigeria. You will be the face of our company to our enterprise customers in Nigeria, to the Nigerian Government and to African investors.

The successful leader in this role will create a template for other countries by building a strong business in Nigeria, managing regulatory and government stakeholders as applicable, and eventually expanding operations across the region. You could become a manager of managers and have responsibility for staff in multiple locations across West Africa, so you must be a proven and experienced people manager with high emotional intelligence and strong references.

We believe in solving local problems with local solutions, so understanding the African continent -- both Nigeria and the neighboring ECOWAS community -- is critical to succeeding in this role.

What do you need?

  • Prior work at the senior management level and 5+ years of experience involving direction and management of complex projects. High-growth operations and/or startup experience a plus
  • Business experience launching and maintaining mission critical applications with banks, telecoms, high growth startups or similarly demanding customers
  • Data-driven decision mentality and sound business judgment
  • A proven ability to prioritise in a complex environment
  • A creative, solutions focused approach, with a focus on achieving results
  • Stellar networking skills and the ability to make smart partnerships happen
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and a desire to seek the truth

Perks, Comp & Benefits

  • Responsibility: Be a key part of a Silicon Valley venture-backed startup
  • Exposure, networking and a front row seat to the technology boom in Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Ownership: Globally competitive salary with significant equity component
  • Health insurance reimbursement
  • Purpose: This is one of those rare chances in life to work on something that has real impact and potential for massive scale
  • Periodic travel across Africa and annually to the US

Qualified and passionate about our mission?

Email resume to talent@smileidentity.com or reach out through a mutual connection to one of the members of our team.

About Smile Identity

At Smile Identity we believe anyone should be able to prove their identity easily, anywhere in the world. Our team is made up of American and African engineers and financial services professionals with experience across global markets in highly regulated environments. We’ve built encryption, authentication and security solutions. We’ve developed image-processing technology from the chip level up. We’ve been part of security investigations and have pursued fraudsters. Having worked with, or for, telecoms, lenders, banks and startups, we know the challenges of building world-class technology and we understand the needs of the African consumer and enterprise customer.