Kampala, Uganda | ISAAC KHISA | A little more than five years ago, Small and Medium Enterprises had limited options to receive payments from customers and businesses. They relied on cash and sometimes on cheques or bank transfers, methods that were deemed inconvenient.
But this has since changed, thanks to the launch of the MTN MoMoPay Merchant platform in 2018. SMEs such as supermarkets, health facilities, hardware shops, fuel stations and salons among others have embraced MTN MoMoPay as they strive to widen payment options and increase convenience for their customers.
One such SME is Benco Liners Ltd, the operator of Benco Supermarket in Nyanama in Kampala. Benard Muriisa, the director at Benco Supermarket says the retail chain’s operation is now efficient since it embraced MTN MoMoPay.
“With MTN MoMoPay, I am now able to know the cash flows and plan for the business because I can monitor sales and revenues online,” he said. “The risks associated with carrying cash to the bank have been reduced.”
Muriisa said it is time for more businesses to embrace MTN MoMoPay because it is convenient, instant and secure for both the SMEs and customers.
Like Benco Liners Ltd, more than 200,000 SMEs countrywide including AAR Healthcare, Dolphin Petroleum Ltd and Kombi Technical Services Ltd have embraced MTN MoMoPay, enabling them to receive payments from their customers and businesses for goods and services using MTN Mobile Money.
With the MoMoPay, merchants or SMEs can also sell airtime and earn a commission, pay suppliers, pay salaries as well as transfer money to the bank.
Lawrence Kintu, the health facility’s business analyst at AAR Healthcare said the MTN MoMoPay option has enabled customers to pay for various health services with much ease.
“With MTN MoMoPay, our customers no longer move around looking for cash to pay for the services received,” he said.
“Similarly, our staffs no longer have to carry cash to the bank which usually has numerous risks like theft or robbery.”
Mary Komuhimbo, the director at Kombi Technical Services Ltd, distributor of Uganda Breweries Ltd.’s products in Ibanda and the neighbouring districts, said MTN MoMoPay has reduced the company’s risks associated with handling cash.
“Currently, 80% of our collections are via MTN MoMoPay and this has reduced the burden on our staff of carrying cash. Indeed, MoMoPay has been good to us because it is instant and secure,” she said.
However, Komuhimbo urges MTN Uganda to consider educating the public about the use of MTN MoMoPay as well as reviewing transaction fees especially when funds are wired to the bank accounts.
Mohamed Abdukar, the country manager for Dolphin Petroleum Ltd, the operator of Constalina fuel stations in Kampala, Jinja and Mbale, says MTN MoMoPay has boosted their operation.
“This is because we are no longer worried about carrying cash. Customers pay cash via MTN MoMoPay and pick their fuel products,” he said.
Abdukar said with the efficiency that has come with MTN MoMoPay, the company is considering doubling its fuel stations to six this year. He said it is time for other businesses to embrace MTN MoMoPay because it is secure and enables them to plan.
MTN MoMoPay continues to invent
Commenting on the new development, Richard Yego, Managing Director at MTN Mobile Money Uganda Ltd said mobile payments have become popular as an alternative to cash and this is projected to continue going forward owed to the benefits that come with it such as safety, instant, and convenience.
“We are proud that more and more businesses prefer to be paid for their products and services using MTN Mobile Money,” he said.
He said the company is committed to adding more features on the platform that will further boost their business customers in line with their aspiration of providing leading digital solutions to support Africa’s progress.