By Ben Oduor
United Bank for Africa has rolled out two Mastercard electronic payment solutions in a bid to deliver cashless solutions to its customers in Kenya. This follows a partnership between the Bank and Mastercard, a technology company in the global payments industry.
The two cards launched- UBA Debit Mastercard and UBA Mastercard Platinum- will deliver quick, convenient and secure payment solutions for Kenyans by giving alternative payments solutions through displacing cash.
The debit card solution will improve financial inclusion with focus on innovation, financial literacy and customer protection. While the Platinum card will offer UBA customers benefits including Legacy Lifestyle Gold Tier Membership, shopping and shipping discounts, Mastercard discounts among others.
On the other hand, the Debit Mastercard gives cardholders full control of their funds and offers them easy access to their funds directly from a savings or current account, thereby reflecting all transactions in real time.
Speaking during the launch of the two cards in a Nairobi hotel on Friday, UBA’s Group Head of Digital Banking, Dr. Yinka Adedeji, said the partnership would enable the bank empower businesses and consumers across Africa.
“As a group, we are committed to displacing cash and empowering businesses and consumers across Africa, and our partnership with Mastercard enables us to deploy safe electronic solutions to the benefit of the entire country,” he said.
Mr Isaac Mwige, the Bank’s Managing Director, on the other hand said: “The introduction of the two payment solutions will enable our customers carry out their banking transactions in a safer, more convenient and more reliable manner. Our customers’ needs are changing and as they change, we will continue to adopt smart technology solutions that deliver superior services.”
Chris Bwakira, the Vice President and Area Business Head, East Africa, Mastercard, on his part said acknowledged the banks move to technological payment platform, saying such solutions will ensure Africans are confident of the security of their money.
“In order to deliver a Kenya beyond cash, we need to ensure all Africans feel confident that their money is secure, and that they have access to relevant solutions that meet their needs at all points of their life. The UBA Debit Mastercard and Platinum card introduces the latest global payment standards with EMV Chip and PIN technology embedded into the card making it difficult for fraudsters to duplicate your credentials.”
He said the chip embedded into the card contains information that is encrypted, making it difficult for the card to be copied or counterfeited.
Clients can access the cards from UBA branches, with plans underway to make it available electronically through their website.
The UBA, Mastercard partnership in Kenya is one among many recent launches in other parts of Africa, which is part of Mastercard’s strategies to ensure that more people are connected to the formal financial sector, enabling them to pay for goods and services in-store or online wherever Mastercard is accepted.