PayMob company for mobile payments managed to achieve a milestone of conducting three million payment transactions in 2016 totalling EGP 1.6bn. The company also managed to go beyond this figure in the first half (H1) of 2017. Emily Renny, product manager of Accept, said in an interview with Daily News Egypt that the non-proliferation of the culture of electronic payment is the most important challenge facing the sector in the Egyptian market, next to the non-activation of the laws of electronic signature.
How do you see the electronic payments market during the current period?
We believe the electronic payments market is witnessing great development during the current period, especially since there is a large group in the community that does not use credit cards and prefers to buy cash even through the electronic commerce platforms. One of the reasons behind that is the lack of appropriate electronic payment methods.
Recently, a number of electronic payment solutions have been developed that make it easier for users to pay through and make it easier for sellers to collect their receivables better than traditional methods, such as virtual wallets, including Vodafone Cash and similar mobile payment services.
Over the past period, electronic payment solutions have witnessed significant growth and are expected to witness even more so in the coming period, especially after the amendments done to the electronic payment laws.
According to current statistics, the number of e-wallets in Egypt is much higher than the number of credit cards used, where the former reached an amount of 8 million so far—indicative of the growth of the sector. It is remarkable that the number of active users of e-wallet services is high and growing well, which is a good indicator.
What distinguishes mobile wallets is that it uses a common device, the mobile phone. They work on both smart phones and regular mobile phones
As for growth opportunities in the market, looking at the e-commerce market, we can see that despite the presence of a large group of people that shop via the Internet, most payments are conducted in cash or on delivery. This means that there is a good potential for growth if we manage to provide suitable means of electronic payment for users.
We have also provided a technology solution that encourages consumers to use mobile wallets when buying online, where the service can be used without entering any data except the phone number and the password
During the last period of many government services have relied more on electronic payment solutions. How do you see the impact on the market?
This will have a major positive impact on the market. Add to that the attention of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) in e-wallet services. Together, they will have a positive impact on the sector. This is obvious when looking at the promotion campaign of Tahweel service, which enables using e-wallets and payments and transfers.
What are the most prominent services provided by your company?
PayMob can be divided into two parts. One is concerned with establishing the technological infrastructure for e-wallets. We have implemented several projects, such as Vodafone Cash and Cashaty of Saib Bank. The other part is providing our own technological payment solutions through the Accept app, which provides an easy electronic payment method for traders, where the service allows clients to pay through any of the methods, such as online, by card, cash on delivery, or through the e-wallet service.
Moreover, we cooperate with MasterCard to facilitate payments and transfers between different banks and mobile operators.
Do you have plans to cooperate with government agencies in electronic payment solutions?
We are already working on expanding e-payment services through e-wallets, where we are discussing providing our services with small and micro enterprises loans providers for receiving and sending funds.
How many payment transactions have you made?
Over the last year, there were over 3 million transactions worth EGP 1.6bn. This year, only in the first half, we exceeded that figure—which reflects the growth the company is marking.
According to the current indicators, we have observed the 10% monthly growth of e-wallets. This could be higher following the CBE’s promotion campaign.
What is the most prominent features of your plans during the coming period?
We will focus on helping companies to offer all payment methods easily and cheaply through our new product Accept, which allows service users to grow their businesses better.
What are the main sectors that you will focus on?
There are many sectors that need advanced electronic payment solutions, such as e-commerce and individuals who sell through social networking platforms, especially since there is a large number of individual users selling products through the pages of social networking sites without a sophisticated payment method. Through Accept, we provide them with the possibility of collecting the price of their sold products in only a few steps.
In addition, we are working with Go Bus and a number of emerging companies in the transportation sector. This is besides our clients in the tourism sector in Nuweiba and Taba. We have a partnership with RiseUp at the Greek Campus. We are also focusing on the education and startup sectors in the coming period—hence, we have been negotiating with a number of private universities to provide them with advanced payment solutions.
Who are your current customers?
Jumia and Edfa3ly are among our most prominent clients in the e-commerce sector. There are also E7gezly and Lynks, in addition to the establishment of infrastructure for e-wallet private accounts such as the Food Bank and Magdi Yacoub Hospital.
What are the most important challenges you faced in Egypt?
The most important challenge is the lack of electronic payment culture in Egypt.
What is the most important legislation needed by the sector to drive growth?
There are many changes during the last period of the legislative climate of the electronic payment sector, and this will help drive growth during the coming period. The Electronic Signature Law must be activated, as it could drive the growth of the sector.
Are there plans to expand beyond Egypt?
We have partnerships with a number of banks and MasterCard, which will help us expand our services outside Egypt. We will start with markets that resemble Egypt in the circumstances, especially in Africa.