Safaricom (NSE: SCOM) and Visa (NYSE: V), the global leader in digital payments, today introduced the first M-PESA GlobalPay Visa Virtual card. The launch of the new M-PESA Visa virtual card opens global shopping for Kenyan consumers, allowing secure cashless payments at merchant locations in over 200 countries through Visa’s global network.
Customers can activate the card via the M-PESA App by selecting M-PESA GlobalPay, under “Pay” or “Grow” option. They can also activate it by dialling *334# then selecting option 6 for “Lipa Na M-PESA” followed by “M-PESA GlobalPay”. Both options will require the customer to use their secret M-PESA PIN. The customer can then view their card details and generate the “CVV” required to confirm online card transactions, manage their cards, set up repeat payments and access their Mini-Statement.
The M-PESA GlobalPay Visa Virtual Card will be exclusive for international, online payments outside the country to protect customers from incurring forex conversion costs on local online payments billed in Kenya Shillings.
Once a customer performs a transaction with the card, they will receive an SMS with the prevailing exchange rate for the transaction value. Transactions will be subject to current M-PESA limits of KES 150,000 per transaction and KES 300,000 per day at the prevailing Forex rates.
“M-PESA has over the past fifteen years evolved from a simple money transfer service to become a robust payment platform and driver of financial inclusion for Kenyans. This has paved the way for numerous innovative services and 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,” said Peter Ndegwa, CEO, Safaricom.
The M-PESA GlobalPay VISA Virtual card is a timely service tailored to meet the increasing needs of Kenyans using global apps and shopping websites for entertainment, retail, business and even when travelling abroad.
In addition to providing customers with the freedom and convenience of transacting across the world, the M-PESA GlobalPay Visa virtual card builds on M-PESA’s security by empowering customers to generate a unique CVV for a 30-minute period. Customers will key in their M-PESA PIN each time they generate a CVV. This feature ensures all the details of the card required to perform a transaction are only known to the customer.
“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,” said Corine Mbiaketcha, Vice President and General Manager for East Africa at Visa. “Safaricom has already transformed how money moves in Kenya, and we are excited to be working together to develop new and innovative payments products and services that can eliminate barriers to global commerce for merchants and consumers in sub-Saharan Africa, through Visa’s global footprint.”
“We are thrilled to collaborate with Safaricom, especially in this era where we are seeing an accelerated switch from traditional cash towards digital spending. By leveraging our vast global network and experience as well as Safaricom’s local know-how and large subscriber base, we are charting a new path for digital payments. We remain optimistic that this partnership will go a long way in opening the global e-commerce market to Kenya’s significant unbanked and underbanked population,” she added.
The M-PESA GlobalPay Visa Virtual Card will gradually be available across other M-PESA markets through the M-PESA Super App under a strategic partnership between M-PESA Africa and Visa. These include Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mozambique, Lesotho and Ghana.