(Bloomberg) -- American Express Co. is launching its first business credit card in Nigeria in partnership with local neobank O3 Capital, potentially improving access to dollars in the West African nation.

O3 Capital and Amex unveiled the product on Thursday in Lagos, the commercial capital, offering the business card with a spending limit of $10,000 and a repayment period of up to 45 days for international transactions.

“The first-ever American Express Business Card in the most populous African country will give us another way to support local businesses with their growth aspirations,” Mohammed Badi, Amex’s President of Global Network Services, said in a statement. “American Express is excited to continue to strengthen its presence in Nigeria and expand its reach across Africa.”

Other O3 Capital-Amex cards for personal and household use will carry spending limits of between $10,000 and $20,000.

Badi separately said that Amex plans to expand its presence in sub-Saharan Africa to 42 countries from 30 at the moment, citing greater demand from consumers and small businesses for the company’s cards.

Nigeria has for years struggled with a local dollar scarcity, contributing to sometimes sharp volatility in the naira, which has lost 65% of its value against the greenback since foreign-exchange reforms in mid-2023.

The Central Bank of Nigeria has sought to attract foreign investors to boost dollar inflows, and is encouraging banks to source the greenback independently to ease demand constraints. Still, they can be hard to find. Most of the nation’s lenders have stopped or limited the use of naira credit cards to make payments abroad and restricted card issuance to wealthy clients.

The O3 Amex card “solves the problem of queuing at banks for business travel allowance and the personal travel allowance,” said O3 Chief Executive Officer Abimbola Pinheiro.

O3 plans to issue 16,000 American Express cards by the end of 2024 and extend the offering to about a million cards over the next five years, Pinheiro said. O3 also plans to offer its own cards in other markets including Rwanda, Congo and Ghana by end-2025, he said 

(Corrects to highlight that O3 Capital-branded cards will be issued in three African countries outside Nigeria in story published on May 9.)

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