Mobile network operator MTN and payment platform provider Mastercard have launched a new virtual payment solution for ecommerce transactions.
The solution will allow MTN MoMo customers with or without bank accounts to make online payments across 16 countries in Africa.
“Through a Mastercard virtual payment solution linked to MTN MoMo (Mobile Money) wallets, consumers and merchants can engage with brands and businesses abroad through digital commerce, extending their reach to an international marketplace and unlocking a host of opportunities,” MTN stated.
“MTN customers with a Mastercard virtual payment solution linked to their MoMo wallets can make payments to global online merchants through a seamless and secure digital payment experience on websites and mobile applications,” the company added.
The operator explained that such a solution was in high demand as mobile devices were the primary channel used to connect to the Internet in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“According to GSMA, by 2025, it is estimated that there will be 300 million more people using their devices to access Internet services,” MTN said.
“In light of this significant growth, mobile financial services have become the dominant form of digital payments, with twice as many mobile money accounts as bank accounts in the region,” MTN stated.
MTN said the solution will enable consumers to explore and shop at well-known global e-commerce brands and pay quickly and securely for leisure shopping, travel, accommodation, entertainment, streaming services, and more.
“It will also allow small business owners to purchase from suppliers abroad and pay with the virtual payment solution,” the operator added.
Becoming Africa’s largest fintech platform
MTN Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer Serigne Dioum said the new solution represents another step towards MTN becoming Africa’s largest fintech platform.
“We are resolute that accelerated financial inclusion is a potent enabler of socio-economic development that empowers the most vulnerable in society,” he stated.
Executive Vice President for Market Development at Mastercard Middle East and Africa Amnah Ajmal said the solution will enable millions of MTN customers to benefit from global digital commerce and drive digital and financial inclusion across Africa.
“Partnering with MTN allows us to accelerate our global pledge to connect 1 billion people to the digital economy by 2025, bringing us closer to a world beyond cash,” Ajmal stated.
MTN said it would extend the virtual payment solution offering throughout its fintech footprint.
Initially designed to facilitate the transfer of cash between mobile users, MTN’s MoMo offering is now much broader, and includes loans, insurance, remittances, and payments.