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Mastercard (MA), Prophius to Aid Payment Acceptance in Africa

Mastercard Incorporated MA recently collaborated with the financial technology company Prophius to introduce the contactless acceptance solution, PayContactless, to benefit small businesses across Sub-Saharan Africa.

In an attempt to enable small business units to avail the solution, likely from October across specific markets, Prophius is collaborating with several bank partners in the region.

PayContactless was built using the power of the affordable digital payment technology, Mastercard Tap on Phone, developed by the tech giant in 2020. With Mastercard’s solution, Android smartphones can double up as reliable payment acceptance devices for contactless cards, mobile wallets and smartwatches. Moreover, the smartphones acting as a physical point of sale require no added equipment or set-up expenses.

If customers choose to pay through the PayContactless solution, they need to only touch a contactless card or a wearable on the merchant’s device. However, a consumer will be required to input the bank card PIN (known only to the cardholder) on the merchant’s phone only if the transaction value surpasses the verification limit for contactless payment permissible to the customer.

Both small businesses and their customers are likely to benefit from the adoption of this new solution. Small business units will gain from seamless card payment acceptance capabilities. Similarly, along with businesses, consumers will be aided by a speedier and more secure checkout experience at stores.

The latest partnership reflects Mastercard’s longstanding endeavor of infusing advanced digital solutions into the global payments landscape, thus bringing in more people and businesses under the ambit of a booming digital economy. As mobile phones become integral to our lives as a handy gadget, the MA solution that turns smartphones into payment acceptance devices seems to perfectly harness the teeming prospects in the worldwide digital payments space.

Also, the expansion of Mastercard’s Tap on Phone solution throughout Sub-Saharan Africa is expected to strengthen its presence in the region that continues to witness a widespread uptake of digital technologies.

The help extended by Mastercard to small businesses via the latest initiative is aptly timed. In an evolving digital era wherein businesses were compelled to infuse digitization into their operations, micro and small businesses grappled with inadequate resources and financial uncertainties due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To bail such businesses out of crisis, Mastercard steadfastly partnered numerous well-established organizations, delivering several innovative digital payment solutions and pursuing significant investments.

Like Mastercard, other companies making concerted efforts to cushion small businesses include American Express Company AXP, Visa Inc. V and Global Payments Inc. GPN.

To aid small businesses, American Express continues to chase technological upgrades and unveil secure digital solutions. The Global Commercial Services segment of AXP issues an array of small business cards across the globe.

Visa frequently provided necessary help to small business units, ranging from technological assistance to empowering the same with enhanced payment services. The Small Business Hub was launched by V in 2020 to cater to the unique needs of small and medium-sized businesses.

Global Payments works closely with several small and midsize businesses, helping the same with enhanced and safe payment technology solutions. GPN provides these businesses with the widespread acceptance of payments across varied channels, thus spurring operational efficiency.


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