• Sunday, June 23, 2024
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BusinessDay

Mobile PoS to bolster growth of SMEs in Nigeria

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The increase in the retail sector, online trade, proliferation of Smartphone, and card users has given rise to the use of mobile PoS (mPOS) technology, especially for small and medium size business owners to ensure faster and easier trading.

An mPoS is a Smartphone, tablet or dedicated wireless device that performs the functions of a cash register or electronic point of sale terminal (POSint-of-sale terminal).

With the global growth in mPoS deployment, Nigerian banks including Diamond bank and Independent Service Operators [ISO] have started introducing the use of this service which has been targeted at small to medium sized businesses.

Speaking at the launch of Diamond bank mobile PoS yesterday, Njideka Esomeju, Head, Emerging Businesses, Diamond bank, said that SMEs are the bedrock of the Nigerian economy.

“The impact of this product is to ensure that SMEs are moved to the next level through evolving technology. Business globally is done online, either with your phone or on the computer. We need to get small businesses to learn how to conduct business transactions on the go and maximize technology to improve their business.

“In Diamond bank, our slogan is beyond banking. So we have truly gone beyond the normal banking of going into the banking hall. This little device can be taken anyway and helps the business owner to keep proper records because receipts would be sent electronically, either by email or SMS.

“You can also use the MPoS offline. The transaction would be stored and when data is restored on your Smartphone or tablet, it will go through,” Esomeju said.

Edmond Idokoko, Marketing and Communications Lead, Microsoft Nigeria told BusinessDay that the technology company has partnered with Diamond bank on its mobile PoS to bring solutions to SMEs in Nigeria which are challenged by a whole lot of factors including rent, power and service provision.

“This initiative is the first one done by Microsoft globally and we are bringing our office 365 productivity solution to the table for small businesses who with the mPoS, do not have to worry about so many business challenges as everything can be done on the go with their Smartphone and we are giving them six months for free and the idea is that if we succeed with this and see how well it grows SMEs in Nigeria, we will roll it out across other regions.

“The focus is in Nigeria because Nigeria falls among the emerging markets and it is a strategic market for Microsoft,” he added.

Research shows that Mobile PoS terminal adoption would jump from 4.5 million to 38 million by 2017, with a Compound Average Growth Rate (CAGR) forecast of 42.7 percent. Also, the adoption of mPoS terminals over standard PoS will be 46 percent; as opposed to the 17 percent seen in 2012.

Currently, the Nigeria Inter Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) has certified 14 mPoS providers and about 2,000 terminals are in circulation.

In a statement talking about how mPoS could influence last mile banking in Nigeria, Sola Fanawopo, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, eMaginations Limited said “banks, ISOs and merchants should view mPoS as a veritable tool for last mile banking in Nigeria and examine how Nigeria can tap into this growing phenomenon called mPoS.

“Technology is changing practically everything in the world. It has changed the way banks, telcos and businesses serve their customers. It will continue to change as technology innovations emerge,” he added.

JUMOKE AKIYODE