Michael Oluwagbemi from Loftyinc Allied Partners Limited in Nigeria is developing an affordable mobile phone-based payment card reader with an array of functions (ProNov) so that poor, small-scale retailers in Nigeria can accept digital payments from customers, and better manage their businesses to reduce costs. Low-income retailers handle around 90% of transactions in Nigeria, but many have no way of accepting card payments. To facilitate adoption by retailers, they are working to reduce the upfront costs of the technology, and focusing on groups of related retailers from a single market, pharmaceuticals, to test their approach. In Phase I, they assessed the needs of 500 chemists, designed the software and device, and built an alpha version that was pilot tested on a small group over three months. They found that ProNov improved inventory management, and could reduce the cost of goods by up to 70% by enabling bulk purchasing. In Phase II, they will refine the technology, implement a monitoring program, build add-on features that can, for example, help sellers procure credit, and increase the user base to 1500 retailers.
More information about Enable Universal Acceptance of Mobile Money Payments (Round 14)