Pioneer on Fintech, Dashen Bank, has introduced another milestone service on the eCommerce platform that allows Ethiopian businesses to transact easily with their global clients. The new service is a gateway for international payments in Ethiopia that align with the government digital economy strategy.
On the event held on Tuesday April 13 Dashen’s Amole, Ethiopia’s largest mobile eWallet platform and Visa, the global leader in digital payments, announced a strategic partnership and the launch of the Amole eCommerce Gateway, using Visa CyberSource infrastructure which supports digital payments for merchants and banks.
On its statement, Moneta Technologies, the Fintech firm that collaborated with Dashen to introduce Amole, stated that the partnership will be a game changer for emerging Ethiopian exporters and online businesses along with Ethiopian Airlines logistics to fulfill Ethiopia’s aspiration to become the eCommerce hub of East Africa under the African Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
The initiative has made Dashen Bank the first bank to use the Amole eCommerce Gateway making it the first Ethiopian bank to acquire all three major international cards; Visa, MasterCard and American Express.
It has been stated that with this strategic relationship, Amole and Visa will seek to eliminate barriers to regional and cross-border commerce and offer an expanded set of eCommerce capabilities to Amole merchants by enabling secure and convenient cashless payment solutions.
Asfaw Alemu, President of Dashen Bank, said that the effort makes Dashen the first Ethiopian bank to acquire all three major international cards to drive eCommerce to its 8000 merchants.
He said that it will have tangible meaning for the country’s economy and hard currency earnings besides massive job creation and comprise businesses that were not in the export industry are now able to sell their products online at the global market.
“We are very excited to work with Moneta and Visa Cyber Source to bring this product to the Ethiopian market, leveraging our combined assets to broaden our offering to a larger number of Dashen merchants. We believe this product will help the National Bank of Ethiopia’s goal to increase the formal forex inflows and reduce the forex cash being brought into the country which potentially ends up in the informal market,” Asfaw said.
The Amole eCommerce gateway is the first eCommerce gateway in Ethiopia to accept all three major international cards. On the statement of the bank, Dashen will expand its acquiring relationship with additional digital payment methods in the near future. The Amole eCommerce Gateway has been available to select merchants since March of this year.
“Today, with this partnership, we can accept digital payments from anywhere. As recently as 2018, a developer or business owner in Ethiopia did not have the ability to accept online payments until Amole introduced its open API platform in July 2018. We started Amole to become the payment and commerce platform to harness the great potential inherent in the B2B2C market that makes Ethiopia the sleeping giant,” said Yemiru Chanyalew, CEO Moneta Technologies.
“For merchants, digital payments mean reducing costs associated with handling and losing cash and broadening their customer base as more and more people move away from cash,” said Abebe Girmay, Visa’s Country Head for Ethiopia, “We are very proud to partner with Moneta Technologies ‘Amole’ to ensure that the market enjoys a range of domestic and international benefits that will transform their e-commerce experience.”
The Amole eCommerce Gateway uses the Visa Cyber Source infrastructure making it secure with fraud-monitoring systems to protect merchants from charge backs.
To date, Ethiopian businesses do not have the ability to accept digital payments on their digital channels like websites and mobile apps. As a result, hotels, tour and travel agencies and retail businesses cannot sell their product and services online to international customers. Local hotels chains were at a disadvantage because they cannot accept international cards online to guarantee a reservation which means the customer cannot get a confirmed reservation and peace of mind, when traveling to Ethiopia. Now, as of today, local hotels in Ethiopia can accept online payment and secure reservation to customers.
In related development Lime Tree, a restaurant chain, has entered into a co-branded gift and loyalty card program agreement with Dashen Bank and a co-brand acceptance incentive agreement with Amole and Fly Dubai.
Under the terms of the agreements, Amole, Ethiopia’s largest digital payment issuer would become the exclusive issuer of Lime Tree’s co-branded card. Lime Tree’s co-brand gift card would provide cashless and card not present “eCommerce” payments, generous rewards such as “Instant Cash Back”, round-trip tickets to Dubai by Fly Dubai and also serve as Lime Tree’s membership card which will be used by over 100,000 customers at all Lime Tree and affiliate locations in Ethiopia.