Vodacom has announced the next phase of development for its e-commerce super app, VodaPay.
The app is scheduled for release in South Africa with reports claiming a date closer to the end of the year. The telecom giant also revealed more details about the app, including insights into its development and its ‘Mini Programs’ feature.
An All-Encompassing Solution
Developed by Vodacom Financial Services in partnership with leading global digital lifestyle services platform Alipay, VodaPay, says the company, is an all-encompassing mobile payments solution that has been customised to meet the specific lifestyle and payment needs of consumers, businesses and tech developers.
Vodacom Financial Services is currently inviting developers and businesses of all sizes to join the VodaPay ecosystem by building their very own “Mini Programs”.
This allows them to leverage off world-class technology to accelerate digital engagement and increase access to the market. The VodaPay Super App reportedly offers ‘endless’ possibilities in acquiring new customers, trading, and advertising through these Mini Programs.
These third-party downloadable sub-applications run within the VodaPay Super App and are available to all consumers to enhance their lifestyle. Best of all, building a Mini Program on the platform is quick, easy and cost-effective.
“Since we announced the VodaPay Super App in July last year, we have made significant strides in developing this technology solution that will transform the fintech ecosystem in South Africa. Our powerful partnership with Alipay strengthens our access to world-class technology and puts us on par with leading global digital counterparts,” says Shameel Joosub, Vodacom Group CEO.
“If we are to drive financial inclusion and go even further together, we want to offer the capabilities of the VodaPay Mini Programs to as many businesses, of all sizes, across multiple industries as possible. Through collaboration in establishing an inclusive mobile payment ecosystem, we can change the economic landscape for the benefit of the entire country.”
A World of Possibilities
Vodacom says that the app will be for a multitude of purposes.
Whether a VodaPay user is looking to pay bills, send money, play games, order takeaways or shop online, there’s likely to be a Mini Program for it, conveniently located in one digital space.
“This is the perfect opportunity for businesses and developers to establish a presence in this hi-tech, scalable digital mall. They can access millions of potential customers every day. While VodaPay will be accessible to customers on any mobile network, it will be zero-rated for all Vodacom customers. This is to further enhance digital inclusion in South Africa,” says Mariam Cassim, Chief Officer of Vodacom Financial and Digital Services.
Approximately 70 businesses have already signed up or committed to building their own Mini Programs in the Super App, including leading brands: Makro, Builders Warehouse, Clicks, Edgars, Game, Exclusive Books, Big Blue, Flightsite, Dollar Thrifty, Westpack, Petzone, One Cart, Netflorist, Kit Kat Cash & Carry, Droppa, Planet54, Jacaranda FM, KFC, Booking.com, TravelStart, Hannah Lavery, Michelle Ludek, To Be Gift Boxes and Afritrails, to name a few.
Vodacom Financial Services says it has fully integrated the Mini Program technology into the South African payment environment to ensure interoperability within the local market. VodaPay provides the infrastructure on which merchants and consumers transact, managing all the login, authorisation and payments processing aspects of their transactions.
Businesses also have access to next-gen recommendation engines and data analytics to deliver personalised offers to customers as well as simplified checkout options, and advertising capabilities to drive sales.
The VodaPay Super App offers consumers a single point of entry and payment platform, with no additional download required. Mini Programs can accept both physical and online payments from customers with the in-app VodaPay digital wallet.
A choice is available for customers of paying upfront, with rewards, or with payment terms such as buy-now-pay-later and nano credit offerings.
Opportunities for Developers and Businesses
The multitude of smaller applications within the VodaPay Super App brings diversity to the Mini Program offering and increases opportunities for creative start-ups and developers. As there is a single ecosystem on which to build applications, developers only need to manage one code base for both iOS and Android devices while benefiting from the exceptional tools, services and support from VodaPay’s technology.
This reduces the time, costs and administration when submitting apps for approval and results in faster development cycles speeding up access to market,” added Cassim.
“The adoption of digital technology is critical for businesses if they are to respond to change quickly and remain relevant in these uncertain times. VodaPay Mini Programs can accelerate the digital engagement of a business in a cost-effective manner, expanding the possibility of financial inclusion. As we position ourselves as a leading pan-African technology company, we are excited to see the innovation from businesses and developers who will partner with us in using this technology to connect people to markets, and to build and support a resilient, dynamic, digital economy,” added Joosub.
Vodacom Financial Services and VodaPay’s technical team will be offering merchants and developers training on how best to use the technology at their disposal.
Registrations are currently open. Businesses who want to reap the benefits of the VodaPay Super App ecosystem can click here to register.
Developers who want to showcase their skills and become part of the Mini Programs’ ground-breaking technology, should click here.