Vodacom Partners With China’s Alipay To Create A Super App. Last year, South African communications company Vodacom announced it was partnering with Alipay, part of China’s Alibaba group, to create a super app that will provide multiple financial services. Integrating with its VodaPay app, Vodacom says the new service will let users pay utility bills and transfer money, as well as connecting them with online merchants and suppliers.
“We moved $24.2 billion a month through the M-Pesa platform, but when we looked around the world, we were quite excited when we saw what Alipay was doing. We saw it almost as an evolution from the success that we’ve had and how they managed to bring everything together on the back of a smartphone.” Vodacom’s Group CEO Shameel Joosub told CNN.
Vodacom Payment gateway is an online platform, which facilitates payments between a merchant, for example: Vodacom and the customer, for goods and services purchased via digital channels. The gateway is run by Vodacom Payments Services (Pty) Ltd (“VPS”). 1.2.
“With the VodaPay platform, as we call it, it’s creating the opportunity for you to trade way beyond your geographical area. Before, if you had a physical store, you were limited to a certain geography. What this does, is it opens it up, firstly, within that country, but also, there’s no reason why someone sitting in Nigeria cannot supply someone in Kenya, provided you just get your logistics right. That’s the big part of what digitisation gives you, moving into this new world of e-commerce where you can trade almost anywhere.” said Joosub.
Vodacom has experience with mobile money products, and operates Kenyan platform M-Pesa in several African countries, but the new app will offer a raft of new services, as well as lifestyle features such as ride hailing and music streaming.
“I think the super apps play a big part, right? Because what you are giving people is the ability to sell their products online. What you’re now doing is giving merchants the ability to sell their products to a much wider customer base. So an example in South Africa, by launching the app, if you expose your product, you’re exposing it to all 44 million customers that we have in South Africa.” Joosub added.