The telcos have launched 'Mowali' which allows users send money between mobile money accounts across different providers in Africa.
MTN Group and Orange Group have announced the launch of a joint mobile money venture. The telecoms operators - largest mobile operators and mobile money providers in Anglophone and Francophone Africa - said Mowali (mobile wallet interoperability) will enable interoperable payments across the continent. "Mowali makes it possible to send money between mobile money accounts issued by any mobile money provider, in real time and at low cost," a statement read.
According to the service providers, Mowali is a digital payment infrastructure that connects financial service providers and customers in one inclusive network. It functions as an industry utility, open to any mobile money provider in Africa, including banks, money transfer operators and other financial service providers.
The objective of Mowali is to increase the usage of mobile money by consumers and merchants. Users of MTN Mobile Money and Orange Money will immediately be able to access the service which brings over 100 million mobile money accounts and mobile money operations in 22 African countries. The venture will connect users to other digital financial service providers beyond MTN and Orange, connecting them to some 338 million mobile money accounts in Africa.
"Today, there are over 690 million mobile money accounts around the world. Mobile money services have become an essential, life-changing tool across Africa, providing access to safe and secure financial services but also to energy, health, education and employment opportunities. The creation of Mowali will help to further transform mobile financial services throughout the African region. It demonstrates the mobile industry's continued leadership and commitment to driving financial inclusion and economic empowerment through industry collaboration," said Mats Granryd, Director General, GSMA.