Ecobank signs e-payment deal with MasterCard

Swiping a credit card - MSPhotographicCashless transactions are set to rise in sub-Saharan Africa. (Image source: MSPhotographic/Shutterstock Images)Ecobank has signed a deal with MasterCard that will allow the bank to offer cards and e-payment solutions to more than 30 sub-Saharan countries

Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda are some of the countries where the new MasterCard-branded card will be launched.

The cashless payments market is largely untapped in Africa. This agreement will lead to MasterCard issuing debit, credit and prepaid cards to millions of customers over the next 10 years. The aim is to increase the adoption and acceptance of electronic payment systems, which will enable card users to access many services such as withdrawing cash from teller machines worldwide as well as to pay for products and services in more than 200 countries where MasterCard is accepted.

Under the agreement, thousands of mobile point of sale devices will be given to retailers in selected countries in the continent that will allow the merchants to process MasterCard payments. Michael Miebach, president for Middle East and Africa at MasterCard, said, “The increased number of MasterCard acceptance locations in Africa means that more consumers and merchants can enjoy the additional protection from the risks and costs associated with cash. This is especially important in Africa, where more than 90 per cent of transactions are still conducted in cash.”

Ecobank will also MasterCard’s payment gateway service in select countries. This will promote the growth of online commerce for small and medium enterprises, as well as for its corporate customers. Talking about the agreement, Albert Essien, Ecobank’s group CEO said, “The initiative enables us to extend our MasterCard acquiring capabilities at thousands of merchants across Africa, grow our e-commerce acquiring business, and expand our service offerings to retail and commercial customers in Africa.”


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