How TPAY MOBILE is supporting inclusion across the Middle East and Africa

TPAY MOBILE was founded in 2014 with the aim of transforming cross-border mobile payments throughout the Middle East and Africa. And today our technology does just that, by allowing merchants and operators to accept mobile payments from consumers without the need for a traditional bank account.

The MEA region presents a veritable and rich tapestry of countries, cultures, and operational processes, particularly when it comes to making and receiving payments. Indeed, while many large international players have dipped their toes in the region, many have quickly retreated, discovering that a ‘one size fits all’ approach simply is not applicable. 

Coupled with the differing financial, legal, and operational processes across the MEA region is limited access to traditional banking infrastructure, with 63% (circa 1 billion) of the adult population unbanked. While this is a common trait in emerging markets, it does mean that traditional transactions based on credit and debit cards are not a realistic prospect for many consumers.

However, with smartphone penetration growing apace, and with it the ability and desire to purchase goods and services through digital channels, there is an increasing need for alternative payment methods to support access and consumption. And this is where we fit in.

Today, TPAY MOBILE’s simple but transformative technology enables over 14 million monthly active users across 27 countries across MEA to make 1.5 billion monthly transactions on our platform. Our 88+ live operator and wallet connections mean over 230 local and global merchants can accept payments for digital goods and services from those consumers without traditional bank accounts – driving both financial inclusion and access throughout the region.

It is also worth noting that digital goods and services that can be accessed through TPAY MOBILE are wide ranging. In addition to eCommerce, gaming, streaming and dating , our technology allows consumers across the MEA region to access educational content and healthcare services that might otherwise be unavailable to them.

For example, Kitab Sawti provides online courses, books and e-learning opportunities which consumers can purchase through their mobile number or wallet. Similarly, organisations like AlTibbi , Jawabkom and Estshara provide healthcare consultations online which can be paid for through the TPAY MOBILE platform.

In addition to supporting various different types of merchants grow across the region, we are also incredibly proud that our technology is helping charities such as the Ahl Masr Foundation, the Baheya Foundation for early detection and treatment of breast cancer and the Resala charity organization accept donations for their very worthy causes.

And our team’s inclusion efforts don’t stop there. TPAY MOBILE employees have been volunteering and hosting financial literacy workshops with INJAZ Egypt, a non-profit organization empowering young people to own their economic success through partnering with businesses and educational institutions across the country. Over the last three years we have also packed and donated food and meals for Ramadan with organisations such as the Egyptian Food Bank.

Across the board, the last seven years has seen incredible change and transformation across the region, and we are incredibly proud to have played a part in that. As we look ahead to the next seven years and beyond the opportunity to further improve financial access and inclusion across the region, our vision remains steadfast : we will continue to further simplify the complex processes that underpin cross-border mobile payment acceptance across the Middle East and Africa.

According to the 2020 GSMA Mobile Economy MENA report:

By the end of 2020, nearly 280million people in the MENA region (45% of the total population) will be connected to mobile internet

By 2025 80% of connections will be through smart phones

Today nearly half of MENAs population is covered by a mobile broadband network but does not subscribe to mobile internet due to consumer-related barriers such as not having a traditional bank account