APIs play a crucial role in streamlining business processes and service delivery by enabling effective communication between different systems.

In Uganda, most APIs are privately held and costly for third parties. That's why telecom company Airtel is opening its APIs to third-party innovators allowing merchants to conduct secure and instant transactions with their customers – with the goal of facilitating seamless integration between businesses and Airtel Money services.

Last year, Monitor reported significant growth in internet and mobile banking, up by 82.8% and 146.1% respectively, while mobile money surged by 46.5% to UGX145.6 trillion ($31.9 billion).

Airtel’s open APIs initiative is expected to drive financial inclusion through digital financial services and would ensure equitable access to digital financial solutions. But Airtel is not the only telecommunications company that is in the API business.

In August 2020, Africa's leading telecom company MTN launched an API marketplace it calls Chenosis, which offers a wide range of APIs in areas such as telecommunications, e-health, e-government, Internet of Things, fintech, e-commerce, identity and authentication, payments and collections, and locations.