Interest in cryptocurrency, a form of digital currency has grown steadily in Africa. Some economists say it is a disruptive innovation that will blossom on the continent. Rightly so, the adoption of the fiat money has deepened into small retail and payment startups to add to the growing list of payment channels for Africans. However, as the continent continues to feel the ripple effects of FTX collapse last month, digital-only bank, Be Mobile Africa seems unperturbed as the Neobank has now introduced a crypto-currency payments gateway.
The action is being taken as conventional banks in South Africa continue to avoid cryptocurrency accounts due to the dangers they may present. Although the South African Reserve Bank’s Prudential Authority recently urged the big banks to start working with crypto players, most are still skeptical. The latest development from Be Mobile enables companies and merchants in South Africa accept and process payments in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and stablecoins like USDC and USDT.
Be Mobile Africa in a statement claimed that the new cryptocurrency payment gateway will provide SMEs with real-time transactions and prices that are up to 10 times less expensive than those of conventional banks. According to CEO Dr Cédric Jeannot, It’s crucial to keep in mind that Africa is one of the world’s fastest-growing cryptocurrency marketplaces for a variety of reasons.
“Many African businesses don’t have access to the same tools that are available in the western market and are therefore leapfrogging to crypto when it comes to payments. This is especially true in countries where local currencies are losing value – using crypto to preserve wealth in unfavourable economic conditions.”
Be Mobile Africa Service Rollouts
It is important to note that Be Mobile Africa only entered the South African market in September this year. However, the Neobank has looked relentless in its plot to disrupt the country’s banking sector using technology.
Neo banks are increasingly becoming attractive in South Africa as TymeBank, Discovery Bank and Bank Zero have all launched in the past 3 years. This has seen traditional banks accelerate their digital-first strategies and aggressively reposition their platform-based model, to offer customers innovative financial products and services. However, Be Mobile has positioned itself to provide the most innovative services for South Africans and Africans at large.
In October, Be Mobile Africa launched its multi-currency business banking platform to enable customers apply for and open USD and EUR business accounts using the platform within 48 hours without having to physically visit a bank office. The most recent service line will accelerate international payments in Africa.
Interestingly, users can automatically convert incoming crypto payments into ZAR, USD or EUR, or have the option to keep crypto with Be Mobile Africa providing full custody.