Diamond Trust Bank Kenya (DTB) has partnered Mastercard to roll-out the DTB Masterpass QR app in Kenya, a mobile payment solution that will enable millions of businesses to accept fast and secure digital payments from consumers just months after Kopo Kopo announced a similar deal.

Mastercard aims to impact over 250,000 micro, small and medium enterprises across eleven markets in Sub-Saharan Africa over the next five years. Kopo Kopo will be working with DTB to ensure the solution reaches their full network, meeting the needs of merchants working across various sectors in the country.

Unlike Lipa Na M-Pesa, Masterpass QR allows customers to just scan and pay instantly as if they had their credit or debit cards. The firms are signing up merchants for acceptance then focus on getting as many consumers as possible to fight cash, slow Lipa Na M-Pesa and cards. Masterpass QR enables them to accept digital payments anywhere, anytime.

Users of the DTB mobile banking platform will be able to safely pay for in-store purchases by scanning a Quick Response (QR) code displayed at checkout on their smartphones, or by entering a merchant identifier into their feature phones. Consumers don’t need to carry cash or their physical bank cards – rather they can pay immediately using the DTB Masterpass QR app on their mobile device anywhere that Masterpass QR is accepted.

Currently Masterpass QR is being introduced at key Kopo Kopo merchants in Nairobi, but there are plans to ensure the solution is accessible across the country. Additionally, the interoperable solution can be used in markets outside of Kenya, and Mastercard has started to introduce the solution in multiple markets across the continent.

“The mobile solution will not only eliminate the merchants’ reliance on costly point of sale devices, it will also remove the dangers and logistical issues of handling cash on daily sales. Kenyan merchants who previously didn’t have access to electronic payment tools can now be financially included ensuring they are able to track and monitor the businesses cash flow immediately,” says Nasim Devji, Group CEO and Managing Director at DTB.

Devji adds that DTB customers will be able to use their mobile banking app to access Masterpass QR, and conduct their day-to-day banking needs directly on their device.

The roll-out of the solution forms an important part of the Mastercard commitment to impact over 150,000 MSMEs in Kenya this year and additionally supports the company’s global goal of connecting 40 million micro and small merchants to the formal financial economy, helping them to move beyond cash by the end of 2020.

“We’re passionate about giving small businesses the tools they need to grow and prosper, and we see the mobile device as a way to financially enable millions of merchants in Africa. The use of mobile solutions is not expected to decline in Sub-Saharan Africa, especially if you consider that by 2022 there will be over 1 billion mobile subscribers in the region according to recent research,” said Ken Kinyua, CEO of Kopo Kopo.