PalmPay, an Africa-focused fintech firm, has launched a new mobile wallet application in Nigeria to aid the Central Bank of Nigeria’s cashless policy and reward users with bonuses for making payments on the platform.
The initiative, which was also designed to attract Nigeria’s unbanked, offers consumers a range of digital services via its mobile application, including P2P transfers, airtime and bill payment.
Details: Palmpay, which is backed by TECNO mobile, enables even unbanked Nigerians to access financial services through the use of a mobile app that is available on both Android and iOS. It also offers customers a platform to top up funds electronically or via offline access points, with the ability to make and accept individual and merchant payments.
Global Chief Executive Officer, PalmPay, Greg Reeve, said, “The mobile wallet will be open to absolutely everyone, whether banked or not. We will not leave anyone behind, and instead, bring forward a new era in inclusive finance in Nigeria and across Africa. Over a million transactions have been made on the platform within its first two months of pilot operations in Nigeria.
“That is because we reward customers for carrying out airtime purchases and bill payments on the platform and offer fee-free transfers to other PalmPay wallets and N10 transfer rates to bank accounts. Our USP of offering cashback and discounts to users has caught on in the price-sensitive Nigerian and Ghanaian markets.”
The PalmPay platform will provide access to a variety of other financial products and services offered by third parties. For instance, it plans to leverage the network of 100,000 merchants belonging to Visa, which the company counts as strategic partners.
He added that the company obtained an Approval-in-Principle to operate as a Mobile Money Organisation (MMO) from the Central Bank of Nigeria earlier in 2019. This is expected to allow it to build an agent network to facilitate in-person cash in and cash out to its mobile wallet.
Why it matters: Considering the fact that only 40% of adults in Nigeria have access to a formal financial account, Africa’s most populous market is still a cash-based economy and that means more work needs to be done in breaking the jinx of the cash-based economy.
Some benefits of a cashless society, which the platform is expected to aid, are that it seeks to reduce money laundering and other related cash crimes to a minimum.
Role of Tecno Mobile: The device brand is also supporting PalmPay with an exclusive pre-install deal, which will see at least 20 million phones come with the app out of the box from 2020.
General Manager, Tecno Mobile, Stephen Ha, said, “Tecno has helped expand access to smartphones among the Nigerian population. We are now looking to leverage this infrastructure to further improve people’s lives.
“We see a huge growth opportunity in mobile payments and financial services on the continent and are looking forward to working together with the PalmPay team to help shape the future of payments in Africa.”