Local fintech iKhokha has continued its mission to challenge the historical dominance of cash-based transactions in informal markets. Their latest payment innovation, iK Tap on Phone, now makes it easier for anyone to accept secure card payments. In doing so, iKhokha is opening the door to digital commerce for businesses that previously could not participate in the digital economy.
Their efforts are not only garnering attention on South African soil, but in global financial technology circles, too. The Durban-based fintech was recently recognised at Mastercard’s EMEA Edge Conference in Dubai, scooping the award for Accelerating Digital Acceptance in Africa following the launch of iK Tap on Phone.
Known for its card machines and mobile point-of-sale devices, iKhokha has recently expanded its app-based product offering to provide more opportunities to underrepresented SMEs.
“As we’ve got closer to the entrepreneur and the SME customer, we’ve realised that there are multiple pain points that these business owners have. There are hard barriers to entry for different types of financial services and products that they need to start, manage and grow their business,” said iKhokha CEO Matt Putman.
iKhokha seeks to remove these barriers so anyone can accept card payments, regardless of their business size. It’s an approach that is resonating with SMEs. In a few short months, iKhokha has already processed over R7 million through the iK Tap on Phone feature.
Housed within the free iKhokha app, iK Tap on Phone enables business owners to accept card payments with no upfront investment. Users can start making sales by downloading the iKhokha app and tapping a customer’s card on their Android smartphone.
“It’s an easy entry into digital payments for traditionally cash-based businesses. Through iK Tap on Phone, we can help these businesses on their journey from cash transactions into a more secure digital ecosystem,” says Putman.
How secure is tap on phone technology? While some may be concerned about tapping their card on a smartphone, iK Tap on Phone is just as safe as any card machine. Rigorously tested and PCI compliant, each transaction processed through the feature is protected by 3D secure technology. The increasing ubiquity of smartphones in the payment environment indicates that widespread adoption of tap on phone technology is not far away.
“Consumers are becoming more comfortable with the smartphone being part of the payments experience. Think of Apple and Samsung Pay. Tap on phone technology is the evolution of that experience where the merchant’s phone becomes the payment acceptance tool,” he says.
Certain sectors have already warmed to the app-based payment solution. Health and beauty, specialty food, markets, restaurants and travel and tourism are a few industries in which iKhokha has noted an impressive uptake in iK Tap on Phone transactions.
However, the real opportunity remains within the informal sector. These cash-based businesses can now accept card payments without purchasing a card machine, removing traditional barriers to entry such as hardware investment, bank applications and monthly rental fees.
“Our focus is always to drop the barrier to entry pain point for merchants to offer them affordable alternatives to accept card payments,” says Putman. For more information on iK Tap app on Phone, visit www.ikhokha.com.
Behind the scenes at iKhokha – iKhokha is a South African technology company redefining the way SMEs do business through mobile innovation. iKhokha believes that everyone should have access to the digital economy. Their mission is to promote financial inclusion by developing and delivering business tools that anyone can use to thrive in business. www.ikhokha.com