MFS Africa announced Tuesday (Nov. 22) its MFS Hub is now connected to 120 million mobile wallets in sub-Saharan Africa.
In a press release, the company said the 120 million mobile wallet connections are due to partnerships with mobile network operators, including Airtel, Econet, MTN, Orange, Tigo and Vodafone. The company said MFS Hub “scales” transactions across networks and borders so that there is greater value for customers and service providers. It also supports regional and international trade and improves financial inclusion.
“There are mobile money services available in nearly every market in sub-Saharan Africa, with 33 markets featuring two or more networks (GSMA, 2015). However, the majority are confined to a domestic market with almost no interoperability between networks in either a single country or across borders,” said MFS Africa in the press release. “Without interoperability, mobile operator customers cannot send money to another consumer on another network in their country, nor to a person in another country.”
The company went on to note that money transfer operators face the challenge of lowering distribution costs and letting consumers make international remittance to and from digital wallets. To offer the ability for consumers to pay using a mobile wallet, merchants have to integrate with each mobile money network, which inhibits the potential of financial services in the region.
“The MFS Hub allows these service providers to facilitate transactions across networks, across borders and across currencies via a single API, ensuring compliance with all necessary regulations,” the company said. “Operators, banks and money transfer organizations can provide customers with more flexible payment options, increasing the velocity and volume of electronic money in the ecosystem. Merchants can dramatically improve the reach and user experience of eCommerce and mCommerce services, and regulators are likely to see more cash drawn into formal financial systems.”