Sub-Saharan Africa m-payments jungle tacked with M-Iflọ

MMIT & Bango unite to bring cash up front to content payments

corruption remains a risk in Sub-Saharan Africa - Akindele

The mobile payment environment in Sub-Saharan Africa has proved to be something of a jungle for Western merchants wishing to sell their mobile content. Political instability; unclear regulatory environments; a lack of proper infrastructure and corruption have resulted in a lack of viable billing systems. That problem has now been tackled by MMIT and Bango who have released M-Iflọ. This offers a safe payment solution that enables online transactions for digital content for online merchants previously fearful of the risks of doing business in Africa.

M-Iflọ aims to unlock the world of mobile payments in Africa. Essentially it is a billing mechanism and verification portal for digital wallets.

Jide Akindele, CEO with MMIT observed, “Unfortunately corruption remains a substantial risk within the mobile money industry in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

He continued, “This has resulted in a reluctance from the world’s app stores and mobile brands to engage the African market.”

Bango CEO, Ray Anderson, commented, “There’s a smartphone boom in Africa and a frustrated demand for digital content.”

“M-Iflọ has been designed to suit the ‘cash up front’ instincts of the African market.”

M-Iflọ will give millions of Africans the ability to make mobile payments for apps, games and other smartphone content.

It allows consumers with a mobile wallet account in Africa to pick their wallet provider as a payment option at the checkout page of a content site.

In near real-time, the tool queries the accounts of mobile wallet subscribers to determine if the subscriber has enough value in their wallet account to facilitate a purchase.

M-Iflọ also enables those without a mobile wallet to buy content on major app stores, using a top up card that can be bought in retail outlets, with codes to use at the checkout page of an app store or other merchant site.

Beginning in key Sub-Saharan markets, M-Iflọ will initially be available in Kenya and Nigeria, quickly followed by Uganda, Tanzania, and Zambia.

M-Iflọ is already integrated with some of the major mobile wallet providers in Africa, including Mobipay in Kenya, Stanbic IBTC Mobile Money in Nigeria and further announcements are imminent.

‘Iflọ’ is a Yoruba word for content or information. Yoruba is the language of the largest ethnic group in Nigeria and the most commonly spoken language after English.

Read the full Press release here.

About Tony Dennis

Tony is currently Editor of GoMobile News. He's a veteran telecoms journalist who has previously worked for major printed and online titles. Follow him on Twitter @GoMoTweet.
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