Visa unveils new mobile prepaid product for developing telecom markets

Visa will introduce a mobile prepaid product serving the needs of unbanked and
under-banked consumers.

The new product, a Visa prepaid account that can be accessed through a mobile
phone, offers consumers in developing countries a secure, reliable, globally
interoperable electronic payment account.
MTN Group, a telecom provider in Africa and the Middle East, plans to offer the
new Visa product to MTN Mobile Money customers across its markets. As part of
the launch, the new product will be available to customers in Nigeria and

More than one hundred mobile money programs provide consumers in developing
countries with basic financial services, with several more being planned by
mobile network operators and financial institutions.

Visa’s new product will enhance the security, scale and interoperability of
these mobile money programs, while extending their payment functionality by
enabling account holders to send funds to each other, send and receive
international remittances, make purchases at merchants or online where Visa is
accepted or withdraw funds at a Visa ATM.

Reaching consumers who have previously lacked access to formal financial
services with secure and reliable electronic payments is finally a reality,”
said Jim McCarthy, head of product for Visa.

MTN Mobile Money has been implemented in 12 countries. At 30 September 2011,
there were 5.7 million registered mobile money customers.

The launch of this product with Visa doesn’t only enhance our current mobile
money offering, but also represents yet another crucial milestone in our
journey to bring value-adding services to the growing population of mobile
phone users in our markets. And as the appetite for mobile technology grows,
MTN is excited to be at the forefront of providing millions of our customers
with such important product innovations,” said Christian de Faria, MTN Group Chief
Commercial Officer.

The mobile phone is changing how consumers around the world pay and get paid,
and offers financial service providers in developing countries a new, efficient
channel to serve the unbanked and under-banked. In the last ten years, 100
million2 people have been newly ‘banked’ through mobile services that offer
consumers basic financial services that are limited in geographic reach.

Visa’s recent acquisition of Fundamo, a leading mobile money platform in
developing countries, and its integration into Visa, has created the first
globally interoperable mobile payment platform that can connect existing mobile
money services with Visa’s global payment network, VisaNet.

Developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America are among the first
target markets for Visa’s new mobile-based prepaid product.

Visa is working closely with financial institutions, mobile network operators,
governments and non-governmental organisations in developing countries to
extend access to financial services and electronic payments, helping drive
economic growth and financial inclusion by migrating cash spend to electronic

By Team
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