MTN launches Mobile Money in South Africa

MTN has launched its Mobile Money (MoMo) services in South Africa in partnership with Ubank.

This follows a Memorandum of Understanding being signed in November 2019 between the two parties.

The agreement enables customers and general consumers to transact and make payments using their cellphone rather than traditional banking services.

MTN South Africa chief officer for mobile financial services Felix Kamenga said MTN envisions these services helping to bridge the gap for those who do not currently use banking services.

“We believe that MoMo will truly help close the gaps between banked and unbanked consumers in South Africa and furthermore help the consumers have other channels to receive and send money safely and securely,” Kamenga said.

“In today’s highly digital world driven by evolving Fintech, we are proud to partner with MTN SA in providing mobile money services,” said Ubank CEO Luthando Vutula.

“It is a great privilege for us as a bank to partner with a renowned brand such as MTN in working on a product which will create value for consumers in the under-serviced and under-banked segments of the market.”

USSD, features and apps

Mobile Money is available to customers via USSD on *120*151#. Customers can also dial *151# for free to use the service.

There are also MTN Mobile Money Android and iOS apps available on the Google Play Store and App Store respectively.

Mobile Money is initially only available to MTN customers and offers a selection of basic services.

The initial version of Mobile Money includes:

  • Send money to local cellphone numbers.
  • Buy prepaid services like electricity and data.
  • Pay for purchases at selected till points.
  • Perform “Cash In and Cash Out” transactions at MTN stores or mobile money agents.

However, MTN has promised innovation in the next few months that “aims to bring even more South Africans into the digital economy”.

Additional information provided regarding Mobile Money includes the following:

  • Users do not need to have a bank account.
  • Users must be South African residents and 18 years or older.
  • Users need to be active MTN customers to qualify for selected promotional offers.
  • There are no minimum balances required, no monthly charges, and no automated debits.

African success

The launch of Mobile Money in South Africa follows the service’s “successes in other African countries”.

“We have learnt what to do as well as what not to do, and we believe that MTN has a significant footprint in South Africa to reach underbanked and underserved communities still heavily reliant on cash to transact,” said MTN.

“We see MoMo playing a significant role to both the man on the street as well as the South African economy by enabling enterprise development at the formal and informal level.”


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MTN launches Mobile Money in South Africa