Mastercard, Netcash QR code billing hailed as brilliant by SME industry players
DURBAN – The recently launched Netcash and Mastercard Quick Response (QR) code billing service intended for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) is set to significantly improve revenue collect revenue more effectively.
Small business owners welcomed the innovation with business consultant at Mindset Shift Business Consulting Ntokozo Biyela saying that anything improving the payment system in general was good because it created more access for consumers.
“However, since these innovations were developed in South Africa, black merchants from townships and rural areas needed to benefit from them,” said Biyela.
University of KwaZulu-Natal entrepreneurship and management academic Lindiwe Kunene said that the system was brilliant for SMEs that generally had structure and may have used such platforms for some time.
“On the other hand, only about half of the small businesses have and use such facilities. The micro-businesses most of whom are informal tend to not have these facilities and systems,” said Kunene.
She said that policy tended to classify the whole SMEs sector as one, however, that was not the case and the products developed for them needed to be different.
Netcash has collaborated with Mastercard with the intention to create a platform that would allow merchants to accept card payments from select Masterpass-enabled digital wallets across various channels including physical or digital invoices, eCommerce sites as well as at Point of Sale.This QR payment system would meet the demand of today’s connected consumers who were increasingly seeking easy and contactless ways to pay their bills during social distancing.
Netcash said that it already processed two million bills annually for a wide range of small merchants, including schools, non-profit organisations and tradesmen. QR code payments forms part of Netcash’s strategy to offer its customers a wide choice of convenient payment options across channels, improve revenue collection, speed up payments and achieve efficiencies.
Consumers could pay their bills by scanning the QR code with any Masterpass digital wallet, the Scan to Pay functionality in the Nedbank or FNB banking apps or with Zapper. They would then select the payment card they would like to use and enter their bank card’s ATM PIN or One Time PIN number to authorise payment. Their account would then be updated immediately.
Charles Pittaway, managing director at Netcash, a payment solutions provider, said on Tuesday that they were using the latest technologies to make it as easy as possible for SMEs to collect revenue from their customers.
“Offering a selection of seamless payment options that can be used across channels such as mobile, eCommerce, and in the face-to-face retail environment is an important part of achieving that goal,” said Pittaway.
Country Manager for Mastercard in South Africa Suzanne Morel said they were proud to partner with Netcash at a time when small businesses and merchants needed an affordable payments solution to meet consumer needs as they were increasingly looking for contactless ways to settle their bills during this time of social distancing,” said Morel.
She added that this also freed South Africans consumers from having to withdraw cash, hand over their payment cards, or load a new beneficiary onto internet banking. “Now they can pay for an extensive range of services and bills, anywhere, anytime they want simply by scanning a QR code.”
Pittaway said they said their strategic partnership with Mastercard allowed anyone with a mobile device to process secure online payments by simply scanning the QR code on their bill and following the on-screen prompts. “This is in addition to the 3D secure credit card payments already available through Mastercard, including the ability to process cash payments powered by Masterpass.”
Netcash would automatically enable QR payments across its suite of invoicing services, through its integrated accounting and ERP software. For example, Sage Accounting software could now produce an invoice that would display a QR code linked to that specific document, which would automate the reconciliation process once the payment was made.
The Masterpass checkout service would also be offered to any business considering customised integration to internal billing systems though Netcash’s Application Programming Interface (API), and to Point of Sale software companies to produce on-screen or printed QR codes on bills.