Arab world’s online payment service provider PAYFORT has launched its pay@store service in Egypt in a move to help bring online shopping to millions of unbanked Egyptians.
pay@store is also expected to boost Egypt’s e-commerce industry by allowing merchants to cater to the large segment of the market that is still dominated by cash transactions.
According to Omar Soudodi, Managing Director of PAYFORT, “With pay@store, unbanked users who don’t have credit or debit cards will be able to take advantage of the benefits associated with online shopping — not least of all comfort and competitive prices — as they can now access the variety of products and services available in Egypt through leading merchants and service providers registered with PAYFORT Network.”
pay@store works for both domestic and international merchants. The buyer selects pay@store as payment method for the purchase and receives a payment voucher containing relevant information about the purchase including price, merchant name, and expiry date. The buyer can then complete the payment in person with cash at any one of the 50,000 points of sale (PoS) in the Fawry network.
According to the firm, buyers can also access the pay@store service at more than 1,400 post office branches; at National Bank of Egypt, HSBC, Blom Bank, Banque Misr, Bank Audi, and Arab African International Bank ATMs (credit/debit card payments only); and via their National Bank of Egypt e-wallet, which can be set up at any NBE branch.
pay@store will store the information on the payment voucher, which will be used to verify its validity when the payment is being executed. Once payment is made, the order will then be shipped to customer’s home, or in the case of virtual products and services such as air ticket and software purchases, the customer will receive confirmation.
PAYFORT already works with Souq.com, Dubizzle.com, Landmark, Sukar, AirCairo, flynas, Air Arabia, Carrefour, and Tecom and aims to continue partnering with more retail stores, airlines, ticketing agencies, and utility and service providers to further increase the variety of products and services available to Egyptian users who shop online.
PAYFORT is looking to help facilitate electronic payments while driving e-commerce adoption among private sector organizers and SMEs. With close to 40 Million Internet users and with 65% of the population under the age of 30, online payments in Egypt are expected to grow exponentially in the years to come. Mobile internet adoption is also becoming increasingly accessible and popular in Egypt, contributing to a surge of startups in the past few years as more businesses try to capture online customers.
“PAYFORT enables businesses to fast track their online payment needs to better serve their customers while mitigating risk and reducing potential for online fraud,” added Soudodi.
While the average global banked rate is 50%, the rate in Egypt is only 9%, half of the Arab world’s average of 18%. Though very low in credit and debit card penetration, Egypt remains a vibrant market for e-commerce with a 40% internet penetration rate, totaling approximately 38 million internet users, 7% of which shop and pay online. PAYFORT makes it possible for them.