MPesa has partnered with Visa, the world’s largest retail electronic payments company, to enable Mpesa users to make payments on e-commerce sites like Amazon, send money internationally, and make cross-border payments.
According to a report by Citi, “M-Pesa is a principal license holder of Visa, in the same way financial institutions would be.”
The partnership aims to enable tourists visiting Kenya to use MPesa in Kenya by downloading an app. Similarly, Mpesa users travelling abroad should be able to use MPesa to make payments abroad. Mpesa and Visa are awaiting regulatory approvals for the new payment product.
“With this joint effort, Visa and Safaricom will seek to eliminate barriers to global commerce and offer an expanded set of mobile e-commerce capabilities to merchants and consumers by enabling secure and convenient cashless payment solutions,” Visa said on their website.
Mpesa is Africa’s largest Fintech. Additionally, it is the largest mobile money service with over 40 million users in Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, Lesotho, Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Egypt. The platform has 400,000 30-day active merchants and 8 million MSMEs (over 240,000 merchants and 5 million MSMEs in Kenya) using the platform for payment collections, the Citi report notes.
In April, Safaricom and Vodacom completed the acquisition of the MPesa brand from UK’s telecommunication giant, Vodafone. The deal aimed to accelerate the growth of Mpesa throughout the African continent.
Visa is the leading retail electronic payments network in the world. The partnership with Mpesa will expand Visa’s network in Africa. Additionally, the deal will boost Mpesa’s presence in the international scene and grow its market beyond the African continent.