Visa is in “advanced discussions” with leading Nigerian banks about launching its mVisa payment service in the country before the end of 2016, following its debut in India.
mVisa, which was unveiled by the credit card giant a year ago, enables consumers to pay for goods by scanning a QR code on a smartphone or entering a merchant number into their feature phones.
Consumers need to have Visa accounts, from which their payment is transferred to the account of the merchant.
Services that enable consumers in emerging markets to make payments at merchants’ point of sale are unusual. Such services are more commonly found in wealthier markets with higher penetration of debit and credit cards. Visa is targeting this discrepancy as an opportunity.
“Because mVisa allows merchants to accept Visa payments without having to invest in costly point of sale hardware, it gives Nigerian consumers a reliable, secure and convenient mobile payment option,” said Ade Ashaye, group country manager for Visa West Africa.
Nigerian financial institutions interested in offering mVisa include Diamond Bank.
Previously, mVisa was launched in India by a number of banks, including ICICI Bank. The bank incorporated the payment service into its Pockets app, as well as ensuring retailers in the launch market of Bangalore supported it. That was in October last year. State Bank of India, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank also committed to integrating mVisa.