Paga, a Nigerian mobile money and payment services startup has announced its partnership with Visa to expand its services and give subscribers a wider network. In a statement issued on Medium, the Fintech said the partnership is aimed at accelerating services toward global reach, and to give account holders the ability to make transactions using an already established platform with global network.
“We are pleased to announce our strategic partnership with Visa to enable Paga and Visa work closely in accelerating secure and convenient mobile payments for merchants and consumers in markets where Paga operates.
This partnership is in line with Visa’s goals to drive alternative payment channels, in this case, mobile wallets, within its global ecosystem. For Paga, partnering with Visa is one step further in our global expansion plans. Now, all Paga account holders will have access to Visa credentials (physical and virtual cards) tied to their Paga accounts and thus the ability to transact anywhere in the world where Visa is accepted,” the statement said.
Paga said that the partnership involves new innovative initiatives that will be introduced soon: Merchant acceptance solutions which include QR codes and NFC for in-store merchant payments, online payments, and international remittances which will be facilitated through Visa platform.
Nigerian Fintechs have been using partnership strategy to expand their services to countries beyond the shores of Africa. Last month, Interswitch announced its partnership with American Express. The two companies were aiming to leverage on each other’s audience to expand their services. It appears that other Fintechs in Nigeria are following the same pattern.
Speaking on the partnership, Paga’s Founder and Group CEO Tayo Oviosu said Visa has become their ideal choice of partnership because they have common goals, and together they will make a great team in providing services to the underserved.
“We are excited to partner with Visa, a leader in payments globally, as they are constantly building world class solutions for consumers and businesses. Our goals are well aligned. As we scale our wallet across emerging markets such as Nigeria, Mexico, and Ethiopia, partnering with Visa to give both consumers and businesses, who have been underserved, access to Visa’s global network made sense to us.
“Furthermore, it was clear to us in all our engagements the alignment of our goals towards solving the issues of cash, digitizing cash transactions and delivering financial services using new and innovative approaches. We are very happy to have signed a long-term relationship with Visa,” Oviosu said.
Part of the innovation that the partnership will facilitate is to give merchants who use Paga’s payment collection suite the ability to accept non-card based payments from customers from around the world, as long as they original banks offer Visa services.
Paga believes that the new approach will change a lot of things, improve customer service, usher in a new experience that will in the long-run yield growth in sales.
Visa also expressed confidence and excitement about the partnership. Visa’s Vice President, Head of Strategic Partnerships, Fintech & Ventures for Central Europe Middle East and Africa Otto Williams said the development will result in speed and convenience beyond borders.
“We are excited to have Paga plug into our network, as a company we remain grounded on the principles of partnership, innovation, trust and openness. This development ushers in a new era of speed and convenience beyond borders.
“It also allows us to continue working towards innovating robust platforms through which merchants using paga’s payment collection suite can benefit from international money transfers and the growing eCommerce industry,” Williams said.
The statement reveals that Paga will join Visa Fintech Fast-Track Program as part of the deal. The program gives fintechs easy access to the global Visa payments network. The fintech fast-track program also provides support to players in the payment industry who are developing new commerce experiences by opening up Visa’s network to allow them facilitate financial services beyond their immediate environment.
Moreover, the fintech fast-track program includes eased access to Visa’s payment capabilities and its streamlined processes. This strategy affords companies the opportunity to grow in phases no matter the size of the company.
Paga is a mobile platform that allows its users to transfer money electronically and make payments through their mobile devices. Paga acts as a mobile wallet where any user equipped with a mobile device can conduct transactional activities using their device. It was founded in 2009 by Tayo Oviosu and publicly launched in 2011.