Mobile Money Interoperability Records Almost 4.4m Transactions in First Year

Mobile Money Interoperability (MMI) recorded a total over 4.4 million transactions in its first year of operations.

Beginning with just 96,907 transactions in its first month, public usage of the cross-network platform grew phenomenally to 422,275 transactions in December last year and 502,873 transactions in May this year.

Before MMI came into being, cross-network transactions through the ‘token’ system were hovering at around 90,000 per month. This shows that the MMI is serving a need.

MMI or seamless cross-mobile money network transactions became possible in May last year, following a challenge thrown to the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement System (GhIPSS), the Telcos and financial institutions by Vice-President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia. Before its introduction, sending money from one mobile money wallet to another of a different network could only be done through agents, using the ‘token’ system. Individuals therefore could not directly transfer funds the wallet of a different network. But that cumbersome process and the inconvenience ended a year ago.

Besides individual transactions on the MMI platform, many Fintech companies have found it very useful to support new products as payments can now be made easily across networks.

The Chief Executive Officer of GhIPSS, Arche Hesse, in an interview described the MMI initiative as successful. He said it has provided a very efficient way of funds-transfer for many people. He explained that it has opened up the mobile money payment platform, enabling people and businesses to use it in different ways.

According to Mr. Hesse, the increased acceptance of mobile money by shop owners and service providers is largely because payments can now be made seamlessly across networks. He added that the linkage of the MMI platform to the e-zwich and bank accounts has further opened-up the payment system, and encouraged many more initiatives.

Mr. Hesse anticipates that with passage of the Payment Systems and Services Act, a lot more products and services will be developed – which will further boost usage of the MMI platform. He hinted that GhIPSS is also working on some initiatives that will make the use of mobile money for payments easier and quicker.