NIGERIA:Verve Int’l partners 13 Nigerian banks, mobile money operators

Verve International has announced its strategic partnership with Nigerian banks and Mobile Money Operators to deploy Cardless transaction infrastructure across all states in the country.

Known as Paycode, this infrastructure makes it possible for Nigerians to withdraw money at ATMs and POS merchants, and make payments at PoS merchants without using cards. Financial institutions who have already adopted this ground-breaking technology include GTBank, Fidelity Bank, FCMB, Wema Bank, Heritage Bank, Union Bank, Zenith Bank, Stanbic IBTC Bank, Unity Bank, Sterling Bank, Skye Bank, UBA and Access Bank, as well as Paga, ReadyCash, Quickteller Paypoint and FETS. Other financial institutions are currently being implemented and service should be ready to be accessed by customers in the next few months.

This technology shows clear understanding on the part of the adopting institutions and Verve of the plight of their customers. Customers sometimes forget or lose their cards which could leave them stranded, but with Paycode these customers would still be able to get cash at the ATM without the need for a physical card.

In a statement to the press, Charles Ifedi, CEO, Verve International said: “We are excited to announce this collaboration with the banks, mobile money operators, PSTPs, PTADs and merchants because we know the convenience that Paycode will create for customers. Understanding the peculiarities of our environment and knowing that the millions of Nigerians no longer need to worry about having their physical debit cards with them is a major milestone in Nigeria’s payment ecosystem. This is part of our commitment to continuously address indigenous problems with solutions that can be accessed by every Nigerian”

In all, Paycode offers faster, safer and convenient payment to customers without the use of physical debit/credit cards. In just a few seconds, customers with their phone can pay for goods or services or withdraw funds without hassle.

This ecosystem, powered by Verve, will allow users generate a unique Paycode via USSD, Internet Banking or Apps directly from their Bank accounts or using their existing cards. Another major use for Paycode is the ability to send it to people without Banks accounts, they receive the Paycode as a text message on their mobile phones and can withdraw cash at any Paycode enabled ATM, POS or Agent. This adds an additional level of convenience and security because it removes the need to give one’s card or bank account details to third parties.

In an environment where the penetration of mobile money agents is still growing, Paycode is a revolutionary product that solves a problem that operators and consumers have battled with for over a decade.

“We’re all familiar with queues at ATMs and the low ATM per capita coverage in Nigeria, leaving many Nigerians without convenient ways to access funds, Charles Ifedi says. ‘Paycode can be cashed out at POS merchants and Quickteller Paypoint agents, easing the burden on the infrastructure of partner financial institutions, bringing ease of transaction to customers, and saving enormous time and associated resources along the chain”.

This possibility of cardless transactions is a very welcome development that heralds a new era in payments and is coming at a very significant time in the history of payment; at a time when the world is celebrating 50 years of ATM transactions.