Agreement brings the next level of interoperability to Egypt’s mobile ecosystem

Cairo, Egypt – June 26th, 2016– MasterCard, a leading technology company in the global payments industry, has completed the migration of 2 million Vodafone Cash mobile wallets to its open mobile payments ecosystem, as part of its collaboration with Vodafone Egypt, the largest mobile network operator in the country. The success and smooth nature of the migration represents a scalable impact for a needed collaboration that addresses consumers’ needs and contributes towards making a practical difference in people’s everyday life.

The migration also enables MasterCard to power Vodafone Egypt mobile money service, Vodafone Cash, by processing all financial transactions through MasterCard’s Mobile Payment Gateway platform, which MasterCard has worked closely with the Egyptian Banks Company (EBC) to set up in 2013. This platform leverages on the high penetration of mobile phones in Egypt and facilitates all types of transactions, which allows Vodafone Cash customers to enjoy a bigger portfolio of offered services and experience the convenience and safety of mobile payments.

Being connected to MasterCard’s interoperable platform brings a new level of flexibility to Egypt’s mobile ecosystem and plays an instrumental role in driving financial inclusion while helping to create a cashless society. Customers can now pay their bills; recharge their phones; send money; deposit or withdraw cash from any ATM; transact securely online using a Virtual Credit Number; transfer money to any other mobile wallet in Egypt, irrespective of the service network, platform or device; make payments using their mobile phones at select merchant locations throughout the country; and access a number of government services with ease.

“The collaboration with Vodafone Egypt is a significant milestone in the direction of scaling Egypt’s mobile ecosystem, and affirms the interoperability concept that MasterCard introduced in the Egyptian market,” said Khalid Elgibali, Division President, Middle East and North Africa, MasterCard. “The deal will help MasterCard accelerate our cash conversion cycles and support the execution of our new consumer strategy by adding 5 million new consumers during the year. Most of all, it creates further opportunities for MasterCard to use its technology and innovation to include more unbanked Egyptians in the financial mainstream and in the process help develop the industry at large and increase economic mobility.”

Ahmed Essam, Vodafone Egypt Chief Executive Officer, said, “Egypt has a mobile penetration rate exceeding 100 percent, yet more than 85 percent of the country’s population lack access to formal banking products. This reflects a huge opportunity for Vodafone, the largest player in Egypt’s telecom market, to work with payments and technology industry leaders like MasterCard, harness the power of mobile technologies and bring unbanked and underbanked individuals into the formal financial sector.”

Vodafone Egypt currently has a mobile subscriber base of 38 million, and MasterCard believes this collaboration will encourage a larger base of customers to embrace this new technology, which will help promote a cashless culture and drive the country further towards digital payment transformation.

To ensure the success of the migration, MasterCard has worked closely with the Egyptian Banking Company (EBC) to develop their systems and accommodate all of Vodafone Egypt’s requirements. EBC plays an important role as the platform Mobile Account Management System Provider, to administer the mobile payment solution ensuring interoperability, accounts management and clearing facility as part of an end-to-end solution offered by MasterCard to the participating banks and mobile network operators.