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M-Pesa to transact in 200 countries after Visa deal

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By Judith Gicobi

Millions of M-Pesa clients and customers can now pay for goods and services in over 200 countries thanks to a partnership with Visa, solidifying the platform’s position as the world’s biggest mobile money service provider.

Safaricom has partnered with Visa to create the M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa Virtual card, which allows users to make transactions worth up to Sh150,000 each payment and Sh300,000 every day.

As M-Pesa takes on global behemoths, the deal is expected to raise the company’s international profile.

Customers can activate their M-PESA GlobalPay Visa Virtual card by going to the “Pay” or “Grow” option and selecting M-PESA GlobalPay. They may also activate it by dialing *334#, then choosing option 6 for “Lipa Na M-PESA,” then “M-PESA GlobalPay.”

“ By partnering with Visa to provide the M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa virtual card, we are looking to bridge the gap for our customers who would like to use M-Pesa anywhere across the world,” Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa said.

The two firms are also planning to introduce the M-Pesa GlobalPay Visa Virtual Card in Tanzania, Congo DR, Mozambique, Lesotho and Ghana.

Visa’s aspirations to expand into more African markets via the M-Pesa platform will be aided by this agreement.

“Visa is committed to expanding the payments ecosystem across Africa by opening up the global marketplace for every single consumer. This partnership with Safaricom is an important step in helping to achieve this,” Vice President of Visa and General Manager for East Africa, Corine Mbiaketcha, said.

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The service would be limited to online payments made outside of Kenya, according to the two companies. This is in order to safeguard users from forex conversion expenses on local online payments made in Kenya Shillings.

Safaricom’s earnings from mobile money services are likely to improve as a result of the arrangement, which comes at a time when M-Pesa sales have dropped for the first time in five years.

Safaricom is banking on the greater usage of cashless payments, which began in 2020 after the Covid-19 outbreak, to expand its reach across Africa and worldwide.

By the end of September, the telco had 50 million active subscribers in Africa, a figure that is expected to rise thanks to the Visa partnership.

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