The Ecobank Group has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Mastercard (No. 7 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list) to roll-out Masterpass QR, a mobile payment solution, across 33 African countries. This new agreement will give Ecobank the scale and capacity to achieve its 100 million customer ambition in a profitable and sustainable way by 2020.
The MoU signals the largest Masterpass deal of its kind for Mastercard globally, with the QR solution specifically being selected due to Masterpass QR’s ease of use and convenience for merchants and consumers in the selected markets.
Ecobank customers in Nigeria already enjoy the benefits of Masterpass QR. Soon all remaining 32 countries in across Pan-African will receive the benefits of the partnership by the end of 2016.
Masterpass QR is the first mobile-driven, Person-to-Merchant (P2M) payment solution. The solution is an enhancement to the Masterpass global digital payment service that will enable millions of micro, small and medium enterprises across Africa to begin accepting fast and secure digital payments. This service addresses the challenges of expensive infrastructural issues associated with point of sale devices and eliminates the need for cash.
Group CEO Ecobank, Ade Ayeyemi said, “With partnerships such as the one we have with Mastercard, we are well-positioned to meet the growing demands of consumers and merchants across Africa. We will use Masterpass QR to leverage the power of digital to bring millions of people into the formal financial sector. Our mission at Ecobank is to build a world-class Pan-African bank that contributes to the integration and socio-economic development of the continent.”
Users of Ecobank’s mobile banking platform across the 33 countries will be able to safely pay for online and in-store purchases by scanning a Quick Response (QR) code displayed at checkout on their smartphones, or by entering a merchant identifier into their feature phones.
Daniel Monehin, Division President, Sub-Saharan Africa, Mastercard said, “Masterpass QR has been fulfilling the needs of micro merchants in Nigeria since it was launched in August this year. Our extended partnership with Ecobank signals one of the largest implementations of a digital payment solution in Africa, resulting in millions of previously excluded people joining the financial ecosystem.”
Patrick Akinwuntan, Ecobank Group Executive Consumer Banking said, “With Ecobank Masterpass QR, our customers across 33 countries will now be able to make fast, simple and safe digital payments via Ecobank mobile banking loaded on their mobile device where Masterpass QR is accepted globally. It will also help provide instant receipts for the numerous small, medium and large merchants across Africa.”
Micro, small and medium enterprises across Africa contribute significantly to economic growth, creating around 80 percent of the region’s employment and fueling demand for goods and services. The introduction of digital payment solutions such as Masterpass QR, will help these businesses become more efficient.
With Nigerians soon to enjoy the benefits of the solution first in Africa, the additional 32 markets that will receive Masterpass QR as part of the groups drive to connect with 100 million new customers by 2020 across: Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Democratic Republic), Côte d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea Conakry, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Tanzania, The Gambia, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.