By Dipo Olowookere
For their drive in innovative banking in Africa, two leaders in their sectors, Ecobank Group and MasterCard, have been honoured at the 2017 African Banker Awards.
Both firms were announced as winners of the ‘Innovation in Banking’ award category for ground breaking partnership focused on reaching 100 million new customers in Africa with Masterpass QR by 2020.
Recall that the landmark deal between both organisations was signed in 2016 and focused on financially empowering 100 million new customers in Africa by 2020, through access to the Ecobank Mobile App supported by Masterpass QR.
The award ceremony was held on May 23 under the patronage of the African Development Bank, and is the continent’s banking and finance sector’s most prestigious event in recognising innovation and excellence in the industry.
Commenting on the development, the Group Executive in charge of Consumer Banking at Ecobank, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan, stated that, “Millions of Africans already hold the transformative power of technology in their hands with their mobile phones – and Ecobank is leveraging the mobile platform to introduce solutions that truly meet the financial, payments and collection needs of customers and owners of small and micro businesses in Africa.”
He noted that, “It is for that reason that we partnered with MasterCard to deliver a quick, convenient, secure and above all, affordable payments solution that we have integrated into our mobile banking platform to better serve our customers and deliver on financial inclusion in Africa. This win at the African Banker Awards is therefore a recognition that we are moving in the right direction.”
The introduction of pioneering solutions that meet the needs of all Africans and deliver higher levels of economic involvement is a core differentiator of leading financial solutions. MasterCard in partnership with Ecobank work to illustrate their continued commitment to facilitating financial inclusion and ensuring all Africans can meet their full potential.
Also commenting, the Vice President and Area Business Head, West Africa, MasterCard, Omokehinde Adebanjo, remarked that, “We are committed to delivering solutions that build inclusive ecosystems and ultimately foster the move to a cashless society.
“Our partnership with Ecobank has resulted in Masterpass QR being rolled out across Africa in 33 markets, delivering a more secure and convenient way for merchants to accept payments and for consumers to pay for goods and services.”
Masterpass QR is ground-breaking in that it lets customers pay for goods and services using their smart or feature mobile phones, while delivering efficient and cost effective digital payment solutions to micro, small and medium size enterprises on the continent.
These businesses are core to driving growth and development in Africa, and have traditionally been held back by the high installation and running costs of point-of-sale infrastructure.
The introduction of the Ecobank mobile banking app has resulted in more Africans gaining access to financial tools than ever before. Empowered with easier access to payment solutions such as Masterpass QR means that consumers and business owners alike are now able to transact more securely.
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