Safaricom and Visa launch M-Pesa Global Pay Visa Virtual Card
Safaricom has entered an agreement with Visa to form M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa Virtual card which will see the mobile phone-based money transfer service transact in 200 countries.
The deal is expected to shore Safaricom’s earnings from the mobile money services at a time M-Pesa revenues have been growing steadily.
“By partnering with Visa to provide the M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa virtual card, we are looking to bridge the gap for our customers who would like to use M-Pesa anywhere across the world,” Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa said.
The two firms are also targeting to launch the M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa Virtual Card Tanzania, Congo DR, Mozambique, Lesotho, and Ghana.
This new deal will make it possible for Visa to fulfill its goal of penetrating the African market. Visa is a digital payment service firm for customers, businesses, banks, as well as the government.
“Visa is committed to expanding the payments ecosystem across Africa by opening up the global marketplace for every single consumer. This partnership with Safaricom is an important step in helping to achieve this,” Vice President of Visa and GM for East Africa, Corine Mbiaketcha, said.
The two firms said the service will be exclusive to online payments outside the country to protect customers from incurring forex conversion costs on local online payments billed in Kenya Shillings.
Once a customer performs a transaction with the card, they will receive an SMS with the prevailing exchange rate for the transaction value.
The M-Pesa platform brings a lot of money for Safaricom. The firm made Sh82.6-billion ($706.2 million), which is a slight drop from what it made in 2020. In 2020, M-Pesa brought in Sh.84.43 -billion ($772.2 million).
Customers will activate their M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa Virtual card by selecting M-PESA GlobalPay, under the “Pay” or “Grow” option. They can also activate it by dialing *334# then selecting option 6 for “Lipa Na M-PESA” followed by “M-PESA GlobalPay”.
The virtual card is a timely service tailored to meet the increasing needs of Kenyans using global apps and shopping websites for entertainment, retail, business, and even when traveling abroad.
In addition to providing customers with the freedom and convenience of transacting across the world, the virtual card builds on M-Pesa’s security, by empowering customers to generate a unique CVV for a 30-minute period.
Customers will key in their M-Pesa PIN each time they generate a CVV (Card Verification Value ). A CVV number is on your credit card or debit card and on a VISA card or MasterCard it is the final three digits of the number printed on the signature strip on the back of your card.
This feature ensures all the details of the card required to perform a transaction are only known to the customer.
“Visa is committed to expanding the payments ecosystem across Africa by opening up the global marketplace for every single consumer. This partnership with Safaricom is an important step in helping to achieve this,” said Corine Mbiaketcha, vice president and general manager for East Africa at Visa.
The product eliminates barriers to global commerce for merchants and consumers in sub-Saharan Africa, through Visa’s global footprint, Mbiaketcha added.
By leveraging Visa’s vast global network and experience as well as Safaricom’s local know-how and large subscriber base, they are charting a new path for digital payments.
“We remain optimistic that this partnership will go a long way in opening the global e-commerce market to Kenya’s significant unbanked and underbanked population,” said Mbiaketcha,
The virtual card will gradually be available across other M-Pesa markets through the M-Pesa Super App under a strategic partnership between M-Pesa Africa and Visa.