Global tech giant Mastercard has partnered with Caribbean fintech firm WiPay to build an "innovative and secure payments ecosystem" for the Caribbean. In a release from Mastercard on Wednesday, the company said the collaboration aims to drive financial inclusion through a robust suite of products and services for payments and acceptance. Mastercard’s partnership with WiPay will build on its strategic plan to evolve and develop its presence in the islands, the release said.
As a part of the partnership, WiPay will be able to tap into Mastercard's services like Bank in the Box to allow small and micro enterprises that might otherwise be financially excluded to accept card payments. WiPay will also be able to partner with a local financial institution that will issue a Mastercard prepaid card. In terms of government programmes that WiPay already pioneers like CourtPay and GovPay, the partnership can help facilitate these e-payments, including a Digital ID EMV (chip card) for digital identification and disbursements.
“We found in WiPay a knowledgeable partner to bring our vision to life and are excited to partner with them to bring these robust solutions to the market,” said Marcelo Tangioni, Mastercard’s Caribbean division president. “This important partnership builds on our commitment to lead the journey towards developing smarter islands and cashless societies to strengthen economies and increase financial inclusion throughout the region.”
Aldwyn Wayne, WiPay's CEO said the partnership was huge for the Caribbean as it allows the company to accelerate financial inclusion by delivering innovative financial products to the unbanked and underbanked of the region. "On a macro level, it enables WiPay’s regional settlement network to run on Mastercard’s payment rails, improving the ease of doing business in the Caribbean, particularly within the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME) region," he said.
The collaborative solutions will launch in Jamaica and TT initially, with roll-outs in Grenada, Guyana, Dominica, Barbados, St. Kitts, St Lucia, St Vincent, and in the Bahamas, among others in the near future. The release did not give a specific start date.