“As digital becomes the epicenter of daily life during the global pandemic, being able to move money in real-time is increasingly critical for consumers and businesses,” said Jack Forestell, Visa’s chief product officer, in a statement. “Using our technology to open up avenues like WhatsApp for more people to shop and pay each other digitally is an incredibly powerful proposition that we’re excited to bring to life.”
Now, users of WhatsApp, a messaging service owned by Facebook, can send and receive money and also make purchases from small businesses, Visa said.
Beginning Monday, Brazilian WhatsApp users will see the payment option on the app and can establish an account by adding their Visa card to make the transactions. In addition, small businesses will be able to receive payments from customers if they create a WhatsApp Business app account.
“Small businesses are the backbone of the country. The ability to easily make sales right within WhatsApp will help business owners adapt to the digital economy, support growth, and financial recovery,” Matt Idema, WhatsApp’s chief operating officer, said in a statement.
WhatsApp users will use Visa Direct, the company's push payments technology, and Visa Cloud Tokenization, Visa’s new security capability that launches as well with payments on WhatsApp.
“Using our technology to open up avenues like WhatsApp for more people to shop and pay each other digitally is an incredibly powerful proposition,” Forestell said.
The timing fits with current shifts to digital payments. Visa said its global transactions on Visa Direct has increased by 70 percent since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold three months ago.
“This is an exciting milestone for Visa, as it’s exactly how we strive to make payments easier for our partners, by harnessing our powerful products to help global technology platforms like WhatsApp enable compelling payment experiences,” Forestell added.