Mastercard has announced a collaboration with South African fintech company Yoco to roll out 15 000 mobile Point of Sale (mPOS) devices to small and medium-sized businesses by the end of the year, while educating them on the benefits of going cashless.
To start accepting card payments, business owners simply connect the Yoco card reader to their Android/iOS smartphones or tablets. The hardware is paired with a comprehensive Point of Sale (POS) application and business intelligence portal to give businesses real-time access to sales insights and analytics, helping them to further boost their revenue through informed decision-making.
“Small and medium businesses employ over 60% of the labour force in South Africa, yet they lack the basic tools necessary to accept electronic payments and run their businesses effectively,” says Katlego Maphai, CEO of Yoco. “Through this partnership, we will empower even more small businesses that previously did not accept card payments, while growing the market and making a contribution to our economy.”
According to Mastercard, small and medium-sized merchants that have never accepted card payments are turning to mPOS solutions to expand their customer base and increase sales.
“While the number of South Africans with access to formal banking products has grown substantially over the last few years, the number of card acceptance locations – especially at small businesses – has not grown in parallel,” says Mark Elliott, division president for Mastercard, Southern Africa. “Solutions like Yoco enable these small and medium businesses to respond to their customers’ increasing desire to pay for goods and services with payment cards rather than cash, which is higher risk, without making large upfront investments in infrastructure or facing high transaction costs.”
Since launching its mobile card acceptance offering in 2015, Yoco has grown its base to over 14 500 merchants and is now adding over 1 200 new merchants every month. Its affordable pay-per-use transaction pricing model with no fixed monthly rental fee appeals to smaller merchants that normally would not be able to afford traditional card terminals. According to Yoco, over 70% of its merchants had never accepted cards before.
The company’s growth is a result of its innovative distribution through the Yoco online store, where 80% of its card readers are sold. A business can register and purchase a card reader in less than five minutes, with delivery taking an average of two business days. Yoco is also expanding its physical retail distribution, where businesses can purchase a card reader from several national retail partners and its newly launched Yoco Store in Parkhurst, Johannesburg, and transact the same day
Hlobsile Manana, founder and owner of Mbali Rose Hair, says since signing up with Yoco, her businesses has flourished.
“I can use it on my tablet when I’m at the shop, and when I go out to markets, I’m able to use my phone. Around 65% of my sales are processed on Yoco. Offering customers card payments is not only more convenient, it also means they do not have to carry around large amounts of money and feel unsafe,” she adds.