France Telecom-Orange (NYSE:FTE) and Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) have said that Orange Money customers will soon have access to Visa prepaid account features inside their Orange Money accounts – a significant step in bringing Visa-quality payments to consumers in developing markets.
Orange Money is the mobile phone-based payment service designed by Orange to meet the needs of customers in Africa and the Middle East. It offers Orange subscribers applications such as person to person transfers, bill payments, and agent-based cash-in and cash-out services for loading or withdrawing funds. Launched in cooperation with local bank partners, the service was first introduced in 2008 and is presently available in eight countries across Africa and the Middle East. Orange plans to introduce Visa payment capability to Orange Money subscribers in select markets by the end of 2012.
Visa Mobile Prepaid, a new Visa product introduced in October 2011, enhances the security, scale and interoperability of mobile money programs, such as Orange Money, by enabling account holders to make person-to-person payments, retail and e-commerce purchases at merchants where Visa is accepted, or withdraw funds at Visa ATMs.
Visa Payments with Orange Money: How does it work?
By integrating Visa Mobile Prepaid accounts into Orange Money accounts, Orange is connecting existing mobile money subscribers to VisaNet, Visa’s global payment network that is today utilized by 2.2 billion account holders, 30 million merchants and provides access to 1.9 million ATMs globally.
Working together on a multi-national basis, Orange and Visa will provide Orange subsidiaries and their local financial institution partners with the ability to offer all the features of Visa Mobile Prepaid accounts to their customers, including:
• Visa Payment Functionality – From retail and e-commerce transactions, to access to Visa-enabled ATMs, Visa Mobile Prepaid will add new payment functionality to a customer’s existing Orange Money account. Consumers may also have the option of receiving a Visa prepaid companion card.
• Transaction Authorization, Clearing and Settlement Services – Visa will offer a full suite of payment processing and account management services supported by the world’s largest payments network, VisaNet.
• Visa-quality Payment Security – Visa Mobile Prepaid combines Visa’s advanced risk processing technology with the security and authentication features of mobile devices, offering consumers in developing countries peace of mind when making purchases. In addition, Visa’s fraud monitoring capabilities can help mitigate and prevent fraud.
Developing countries in Africa and the Middle East are among the first target markets for Orange and Visa to deploy cross-over prepaid products and services, helping to drive economic growth and financial inclusion by migrating cash spend to electronic payments.