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Given the speed in the adoption of digital payments and mobile wallets alike, Ukheshe Technologies and Infobip have collaborated to create SA’s first WhatsApp payment gateway to be used by Telkom Pay.

In the first product of its kind, Telkom Pay uses its Eclipse API (application programming interface) integration, Infobip’s telecoms solutions and WhatsApp’s business-line provisions to allow mobile operator customers to send money to anyone with a mobile number quickly and securely, without needing additional apps. In addition to being South Africa's first digital wallet platform, the solution is also the first WhatsApp channel to enable payments using QR.

Clayton Hayward, co-founder and CEO of Ukheshe, says developing South Africa's first WhatsApp payment gateway was an exciting opportunity to provide a relevant and workable payment solution, "We are thrilled that through various working associations we are able to assist organizations address financial literacy and inclusion. The chat banking solution empowers end customers by giving them access to the Internet, an efficient and secure digital wallet, while meeting Know your Customer (KYC) requirements. The digital wallet will also be able to link to other cards, add virtual cards, pay or get paid with a QR code, send money, make cash withdrawals or pay for goods."

He adds that the service offering of the digital wallet platform will be extended to accommodate the issuing of virtual cards, which coupled with chat banking, underpins Ukheshe's drive to support digital-first e-commerce adoption.

Telkom Pay is a fully compliant digital banking offering, therefore Fica compliance is compulsory, Hayward says, referring to Financial Intelligence Centre Act specifications. "Everything is done in a few simple steps, which include taking a selfie and uploading an ID. This is then verified.

Working with Infobip has been particularly exciting as we have developed an easy and cost-effective way to send and receive money using an app that is already on customers' phones. Chat banking is a solution that will add immense value to people's lives.”

Money can be withdrawn or topped up at Nedbank ATMs or at Pick n Pay stores, and free EFT deposits can be made. Limits in both cases are R3,000 a day and R24,000 a month. Fees range between zero and R10, or up to 2.5% a transaction.

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