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The Genesis, The fall and The Exoneration - Affnaija

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It all started sometimes in October 2017, I jumped on an old post on nairaland, “11 African Startup Founders Who Built Million-dollar Internet Companies”, then I saw another post “Top Tech Startups In Nigeria”. I was so inspired that I started brainstorming on something new I can build/startup. The week before, I read on affiliate marketing and its opportunities. Then I started making deep research and thinking about how I can take affiliate marketing to the next level.

While still at it, a friend sends me her recadax referral link. I joined. About a week later, I got this idea of mixing affiliate marketing with the modus operandi of recadax resulting in an affiliate marketing partner network.
I started working on AffNaija, I studied recadax, worked on all its weakness and ported it to AffNaija. I registered on Jumia, Konga, Payporte, and Kilimall as an affiliate marketer. Then affnaija was launched on 22/11/17.
The first one month, AffNaija only made a few thousand on Jumia, I thought it was because of the numbers of members we had then. So, I decided to see how affnaija will fair the next 30 days. Then AFFNAIJA: THE REVELATION happened.
Thanks to all those who gave suggestions on how we can keep affnaija running and to those who are/were willing to make donations. A special Thanks to all members of ‘help affnaija live again’ group on whatsapp. I appreciate your efforts. Some of the suggestions make sense. Some of the measures have already been effected on the website. This was my resolution:
1) AffNaija would only run the 10k subscription plan. With that, people on the vet and ultimate plan won’t have a problem renewing if they have not withdrawn/sold their earnings already. People on the lower plans or people on the high plans that have withdrawn/sold or generally prople that do not have enough to upgrade to the veteran subscription would have to buy AffCash to renew. This will clear some backlogs
2) Their would be option for those who are no more interested to withdraw their funds/sell to agents
3) Earnings on the veteran plan would be #700. So by the end of 30days, you would have double of your subscription fees. You can renew and withdraw some or you withdraw all. It’s up to you.
4) Since first week of January, AffNaija has been running on a ~$600 yearly business hosting server worth. We have never ran the website on some cheap shared server. We still think with right optimization, we can still squeeze some +juice out of the server till we can afford $1000+ dedicated server. You must have noticed the website now load faster than ever before.
5) To reduce AffCash hack/fraud, members scamming each other. As a member, you would need to input your password before you click on transfer. The money will only go through with a correct password. And Agents will now serve as escrow. When you send AffCash to a member, an agent will have to validate the transaction once the seller has gotten alert before AffCash would be deposited in the buyer’s wallet. An agent portal has been created for all agents.
6) AffCash Transaction fee will be 4%. And withdrawal charges will be #200 per withdrawal. Minimum withdrawal shall be #5000.
7) Other means of generating revenue is underway.
8) AffNaija will be open to individuals or merchants or existing promoters who would want to advertise his/her business/products/post ad.
9) Run lotteries, contests, games. With these, member would spend AffCash to play lotteries, games and participate in contests, also, to vote for their favorite contestants. This would make affnaija lively and some AffCash coming back to us, AffCash in wallets would reduce, lesser amount of withdrawals to process/lesser funds would be available for members to sell to agents.
As solid as these plans seem, I thought we needed a professional advice so I met a financial analyst and an online business guru. The prognosis given was bad. That without a strong and stable source of revenue or true investor(s) investing millions on AffNaija, AffNaija would only be like a ponzi scheme. Robbing a member to pay another, early birds win, late comers loses. Then I was shown proofs of a few startups receiving millions of dollars from investors to ensure sustainability and profit. Then he concluded that AffNaija business model wouldn’t attract any investors. He was blunt. No company would invest in affiliate marketing, the yield is always low.
I was so heartbroken. The past few weeks, I have been sad and broken, the thought of disappointing/failing a few thousand Nigerians gives me sleepless night. I wonder how our leaders get to sleep at night after failing millions of people.
I had to meet a clergyman yesterday to report myself, what I am passing through and the situation of things. He said I have sinned since some people got hurt as a result of my actions despite my true intentions from the onset. That I need to seek forgiveness from you all and from God, then try to make restitution. Only then would my conscience be cleared and my soul be saved.
So, out of all decency and high moral standards I have decided:
1) To discontinue operations on the website. Let us not waste our time any further. I don’t want to run a ponzi scheme in a way or another, directly or indirectly. If I should open registration, existing members will get paid. What will happen to the thousands new members if new prospects stops registering, then we will back to where we are now only that more would lose more money. All ponzi scheme eventually collapse when new prospects reduce or stop joining.
2) To pay back part of members subscription fee. After much analysis, I can only pay 30% of subscription fees to members who have not withdrawn or sell earnings to any agents before. That would be mostly new members. I know it’s small but it’s better than nothing. No platform or well founded companies in the country has ever returned not even 1% capital to its members/investors on collapse. With the 30%, that will be a few millions. I might not be able to pay everybody back in a short period of time but I will eventually pay. I see it more like a debt that I have to settle. I’m going to raise the money one way or another. I’m going to sell my gadgets and willing to sell my car if it comes to that. I just want this heaviness out of my heart and my conscience cleared. By Monday, a menu will be available for you to request for a refund.
3) To beg for forgiveness from you all. I’m so sorry for wasting your time and resources on my platform. I’m sorry for all the stress you might have passed through. Please forgive me.
“For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”  Matthew 6:14-15
If or when you forgive me, please comment below.
Going by the terms and conditions you accepted when registering, I owe members nothing, I reserve some rights. I’m protected by law. But am I protected from God’s. Here I am in all humiliation begging for forgiveness from you all and trying to make amendments I can afford out of all modesty. You can either forgive or throw slander, I think I deserve what I get. I failed you all.
To all our agents; past, previous and prospective; Thank you all for your service. It was nice working with you all. I’m sorry for the slander or any form of abuse the promoters might have passed on you. You All should also request for a refund.
With an heavy heart,
AffNaija Founder.
I’m not a scammer, AffNaija just turned out to be a bad idea/business model.
Thank you all.
N.B I advice you all not to involve/invest in any form ponzi. Ponzi drained us all enough all through 2016 and better half of 2017. No ponzi scheme ever end well, it all collapse at a time. Let’s say NO to any form of ponzi/hyip this year. If you want to invest in any platform, ask the necessary questions about their finance and ask of proofs if possible. Having a CAC or a corporate bank account guarantees nothing. Don’t be fooled by that. GOD BLESS US ALL AND MAY HE GIVE US THE FORTITUDE TO MOVE ON AND THE WISDOM TO MAKE RIGHT CHOICES.
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