Tarabut Gateway and Zain Bahrain Debut Telco-Powered Open Banking Payments

open banking

Bahrain-based open banking platform Tarabut Gateway has joined forces with telecommunications company Zain Bahrain to provide what the companies said in a Tuesday (Dec. 7) press release is the first use case of open banking payments via telco app in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

As part of the partnership, Zain Bahrain customers can pay bills with open banking APIs, according to the announcement. In addition, Zain Bahrain can accept bank-to-bank payments, enabling funds to be credited in real time. The open banking payments via the telco app features strong customer authentication processes, as well as decreased transactional fees and a streamlined payment experience, according to the press release.

Zain Bahrain customers can enjoy more convenience as debit and credit card details do not have to be input.

Northern Bank of Bahrain, ILA and Khaleeji Commercial Bank are live on the app and Zain Bahrain intends to add more banks in the future, according to the company.

“Open Banking allows a fast, easy, and secure method for payment and a seamless experience for customers,” said Abdulla Almoayed, CEO and founder of Tarabut Gateway. “Through collaborations such as this, we aim to provide the most cost-effective payment rails for merchants in the region, at significantly reduced fees compared to traditional payment networks and more secure than card payments.”

Tarabut Gateway, which began in December 2017 as a concept, had evolved to integrate with 15 banks in July 2018, according to the company’s website.

The company operates an open banking platform that allows FinTechs and third-party platforms to access customers’ bank data.

Read more: FinTechs Set The Stage For Open Banking Adoption Catalyst

In March, Tarabut Gateway generated $13 million — said to be the largest seed round for a startup in the MENA region.

With operations in Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and the U.K., the company offers Account Aggregation as well as Payment Initiation capabilities under its open banking infrastructure.