On Mercury Restricting Accounts of African Startups

9 min readMar 2, 2022

Many African Startups feel betrayed by their main banking partner in the U.S.

Image Credit: ey.com

Two nights ago while having dinner with some representatives of a potential client, I received a “Moe there’s a problem with Mercury. Emergency.” text from our accountant.

I immediately excused myself from the table to make a call. The dinner was to be paid by the company using the Mercury corporate card I had and by a quick scan on our order, I knew I did not have enough funds on any one card to cover the cost of dinner.

In addition to being payroll day, we also had multiple financial obligations. I was stressed and felt a sharp pain in my stomach. Like many people, anxiety shows up in my gut first.

I checked my emails and saw this

Email from Mercury to the customers whose accounts were restricted


Your account has been placed under review by our compliance team; as a result, access to your account has been restricted.

We can’t provide further details at this time, but we will let you know once our review is complete.

The Mercury Team