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Airtel Africa’s partnership with Mastercard will give 100 million Airtel Africa mobile phone users across 14 African countries access to Mastercard’s global network.

Through Mastercard’s virtual card, Airtel Money customers – with or without a bank account – will now be able to make online payments to local and global sellers that accept Mastercard cards without jeopardizing the customer’s data security. Another possible option is that customers will also be able to make in-person payments at outlets via Quick Response (QR) codes. To date, there are over 1 million merchant locations across Africa that accept Mastercard QR payments.

The benefits of this partnership are numerous. Customers will also benefit from competitive pricing and preferential exchange rates for international payments, and gain access to other domestically relevant use cases including bill payments, merchants payments and value added services such as cash management solutions.

Raghunath Mandava, CEO of Airtel Africa said, “Through our partnership we will enable over 100 million Airtel Africa customers make safe mobile money purchases online and in person. The partnership will also significantly bolster Airtel’s position as one of the the largest offline-to-online digital payment network in Africa. This partnership is truly revolutionary in our market, giving millions of people better access to the digital and online world.”

Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President for Market Development, Mastercard Middle East and Africa, said, “Across the MEA region our digital partnerships strategy remains focused on enabling digital transformation for our partners so that their consumers can enjoy seamless access to payments and a superior experience. We are very excited to partner with Airtel to lead the transition to digital by enabling access to their millions of consumers for online and in-person payments across the globe. Mastercard is uniquely positioned as a single technology provider to enable our digital partners like Airtel to transition seamlessly into digital”.

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