French digital security solutions firm Oberthur Technologies (OT) announced that local financial services firm Myanmar Mobile Money (MMM) Co Ltd, together with its Singapore-based consulting partner Mobilemate Telecommunication, has launched Mobile Money services in Myanmar, relying on OT’s solution.
The services include person-to-person transfer, agent-assisted cash-in/-out, air time top-up, salary disbursements and merchant payments.
This first national mobile money service, offered in both English and Myanmar, is based on OT’s MoreMagic m:Wallet. The service started in major cities in Myanmar at the end of 2013, and will progressively extend to all localities in Myanmar, the company said.
OT said by the end of 2014, there will be over 6,000 agents, with expected double-digit growth over the next five years. The services will eventually serve more than 80 percent of the population, giving them access to basic financial services, it said.
“The ability to pay and transfer money with their mobile phone transforms the everyday life of the less privileged, as they … have access to economic activities in which they formerly did not participate” said Pankaj Gulati, CEO of MoreMagic, a division of OT.
The service, launched with the permission of the Central Bank of Myanmar, will “support the government’s initiative to bring better financial services to the masses” leveraging on the new telecommunication infrastructure that was recently enhanced, the companies said.
The Myanmar economy has experienced strong 6 percent or higher annual growth over the last few years, but less than 20 percent of the population is able to access banking services in an economy that is largely cash-based.
“We have the ambition to lead the Mobile Financial Services revolution in Myanmar. To achieve this we are integrated with all the present mobile operators of the country, MECTEL and MPT,” Dr Kyaw Htoo Linn, chief executive of Myanmar Mobile Money Co Ltd, said.
He said OT’s platform will allow MMM to later extend its service to offer microfinance and loyalty programmes.
“Myanmar Mobile Money service is able to propose many new services that were previously not available in Myanmar,” said Tham Kwok Whye, managing director at Mobilemate Telecommunication Pte Ltd.
He said during the project planning stages, OT and Mobilemate joint project team coordinated to deliver the system based on new developing requirements.
Present in the payment, telecommunications and identity markets, OT offers end-to-end solutions in the fields of smart transactions, mobile financial services, machine-to-machine, digital identity and transport & access control fields in 140 countries. OT employs over 6 000 employees worldwide, with revenues €882 million as of 2008.