Mastercard purchases mobile payments company Oltio in South Africa

6 March 2018

Mastercard Mastercard announced acquisition of Oltio, a mobile payments technology business, from its partner in South Africa, Standard Bank. Mastercard has been so far using the platform of Oltio for authorizing transactions for customers in the region using its Masterpass digital wallet. Oltio was incorporated as a joint-venture of Standard Bank and local airtime operator MTN.

With the takeover of the mobile payment technology unit in South Africa, Mastercard will have more opportunities to further expand into the local financial services market entering into deals with more banks over enabling P2P payments, bill payments and mobile balance top-ups through the use of current applications offered by the banks.

Andrew Wilmot, speaking for Standard Bank, noted that given old-established relationship with Mastercard, the bank believes that Oltio will be properly developed and run by Mastercard as an issuer-independent payments business.

Earlier this year Mastercard reported that it plans to bring its payment infrastructure in compliance with the latest regulation passed in the European Union to offer customers an option for online verification and authentication using their biometric data. The regulation coming into force through PSD2 binds the payment institutions and banks to provide a choice of biometric technology by next April.

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