Mastercard and Angaza shine for payments in emerging markets
Mastercard has signed a global memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Angaza to roll out a digital payment solution for emerging markets.
The duo says their solution “increases access to affordable necessities” – such as solar home systems and water pumps for people and businesses. (In the Swahili language, Angaza means “easy”.)
San Francisco-based Angaza provides a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) embedded metering and monitoring technology, while Mastercard brings its digital payment solutions and infrastructure including QR technology.
“This partnership will help consumers to overcome hurdles such as the significant cash outlay required to purchase critical items by leveraging micropayments, which in turn also helps to build their credit history. All of this is being made available via the internet of things (IoT), which is a great democratiser and is playing a critical role providing safe, secure and accessible digital ecosystems”, says Jorn Lambert, executive vice-president, digital solutions at Mastercard.
According to the companies, the partnership follows the launch of Mastercard’s first PAYG API in Uganda last year, which combines QR technology with IoT.
PAYG lets people pay for what they use, as they need it. The model adopted by Angaza lets users buy at a “low upfront cost”. Consumers can then pay off the cost of the products over a period of time.
Currently, most payments on the Angaza platform are conducted via cash or mobile money. With the integration of Mastercard’s API, the solution will provide more “flexibility and affordability”.
Additionally, this partnership could open up fresh access to other financial services and tools. By keeping accurate records of payments that a user is making, the user is able to establish a verifiable digital identity and trackable credit history which was previously impossible to create or maintain.
They say: “This data gives companies and financial service providers the ability to put underserved populations on a new path to financial inclusion.”
To date, Angaza states that its technology has helped more than five million people in emerging markets across Africa, South America and Asia to purchase over one million products.
Following the completion of a pilot with the BOP Innovation Centre in Nigeria, Mastercard and Angaza will expand the programme to other markets in Africa and Latin America.
In other recent news, Accenture, Mastercard and Amazon Web Services (AWS) teamed up to introduce a circular supply chain capability that uses digital identity, payments and blockchain for growers and suppliers.