MTN today said the spread of Covid-19 epidemic has accelerated the adoption of mobile financial services in Africa.
MTN, as part of its Y’ello Hope response to Covid-19, has zero-rated 120 million peer-to-peer Mobile Money transactions with a value of approximately R43 billion.
This trend has been supported by the move by many operators, including MTN Group, to waive or reduce certain fees to ease customers’ financial pressures amid a global economic contraction, says Serigne Dioum, MTN Group executive for mobile financial services.
Mobile financial services have grown faster in Africa than anywhere else in the world. Prior to their introduction, most Africans were unbanked.
MTN’s plan to financial inclusion is focused on offering mobile financial services to more customers and small businesses in more markets, expanding the range of products available via the MTN ecosystem and becoming a super platform.
“We have developed a low-cost payment acceptance solution for small retailers, enabling customers with feature phones to make payments with their MoMo wallets by dialling a USSD code with a feature phone, or by using the MoMo App for smartphone owners,” said Serigne Dioum.
MTN is offering MoMo Pay through channels: face-to-face, e-commerce, m-commerce and on the app. MTN does not charge any fee to the customer and merchants gain additional value over and above accepting payments because they too can make payments such as paying salaries, bills and suppliers, as well as accessing working capital.
The leading telecom operator in Africa said MoMo Pay is live in 10 markets, with 250,000 merchants and 2.1 million active users. MTN had 35.1 million active MoMo customers at the end of March 2020, an increase of 0.4 million from December 2019.
MTN Nigeria has already accelerated MoMo agency network under super-agent licence, adding 70,000 agents, to bring the total number of registered agents to 178,000.