MasterCard Sees Opportunity with Nigerian E-ID Cards

Monday, December 15, 2014

There’s a lot of untapped potential in the Nigerian commerce market — which is growing — and MasterCard has discovered a marketing niche with the country’s national high-tech e-ID card pilot project.

MasterCard is looking toward the growing trend of global payments by getting involved in Nigeria’s card pilot project that could give it an edge over Visa in a market that has more than 170 million people.

“In August, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan launched the pilot phase of the country’s new National Electronic Identity, or e-ID, card.,” an African Marketing Confederation article said. More than just an identity document, the card will capture everything about users – from their driver’s license details to voter registration information, tax, pension and health insurance data. Plus, because it is being rolled out in partnership with MasterCard, it also has an electronic payments functionality and is claimed to be the biggest financial inclusion program in Africa.”

The article, citing a Bloomberg statistic, said: “only about 30 percent of the West African country’s inhabitants have access to bank accounts.” National ID cards didn’t catch on during the first attempt 10 years ago because of corruption issues, but the new move could bolster the banking numbers in the emerging nation.

Source: (link opens in a new window)

digital payments, financial inclusion, mobile finance