Saudi Payments, which is owned by Saudi Central Bank (SAMA), has teamed up with Visa to launch a low-cost mobile payment acceptance solution, dubbed ‘Tap to Phone’.
The new solution is aimed at small and micro-businesses, which will operate through Saudi Arabia’s national payments network mada.
It will enable merchants to accept contactless payments through their smartphone using near-field-communication (NFC) technology.
The newly launched solution does not require any additional hardware or cost. Merchant can download the app and start accepting payments.
Saudi Arabia has been working to modernise its economy and the move is in line with Saudi Vision 2030.
Saudi Payments MD Fahad Al-Akeel said: “We are pleased to be partnering with Visa to bring this solution to market at a relevant time when Saudi consumers increasingly expect and desire to use digital payments wherever they shop, and when many businesses need to go digital to respond to changing consumer behaviour.
“With further penetration of contactless payments, we are confident that demand for secure and convenient digital payments through Tap to Phone technology will continue and even accelerate post-COVID -19.”
Visa GM for Saudi Arabia Ali Bailoun said: “The pandemic has made it critical for all businesses to expand their payment methods beyond cash, as consumers expect and prefer secure and seamless cashless payment methods wherever they shop.
Bailoun cited a Visa study that found more than 50% of merchants showed keen interest in low-cost acceptance solutions.
“We are excited to partner with Saudi Payments to bring this innovative digital payment solution to merchants in Saudi Arabia and help accelerate the Kingdom’s digital transformation goals” he added.