MoMo Leverages Open API to Drive Digital Wallet Usage Surge in Nigeria

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MoMo, the payment service bank under MTN’s ownership, has unveiled an open Application Programming Interface (API) with the aim of bolstering digital wallets within its platform. This move by the PSB encourages companies to seamlessly integrate the API for payment processing and collections.

Despite digital wallet users constituting a mere 8% of the total mobile money user base, MoMo remains steadfast in its belief that the future of the industry lies in wallet adoption. While competitors like Moniepoint, Opay, and Palmpay are expanding their agent networks, MoMo sees immense potential in leveraging the burgeoning merchant space through an open API and a comprehensive super app, particularly in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country.

In Nigeria alone, MoMo boasts over 40 million wallet users, yet this figure accounts for less than a quarter of its total wallet user base across Africa, which stands at a staggering 200 million. By tapping into the merchant ecosystem via an open API, MoMo aims to significantly augment its user base within Africa.

Since its launch in 2023, MoMo’s open API has successfully onboarded more than 20 businesses. However, the company acknowledges the necessity of expanding its service offerings, including cash disbursement and various payment functionalities, to further entice businesses to join the platform. Among the early adopters of MoMo’s open API are Vasnets, Wakanow, Travelstart, and Huawei.

By providing an open API, MoMo not only broadens its suite of services but also establishes itself as a facilitator, eliminating the need for companies to develop separate APIs and enabling seamless interaction within a unified community of vendors and clients. While MoMo’s open API is free to access, both merchants and their customers are required to create MoMo Accounts to initiate and complete transactions.

“Digital wallets have already taken over in most countries and also there’s a lot that can be done with wallets in place of cards and cash,” Elsa Muzzolini, chief commercial officer of MoMo stated.

The introduction of the mini-app feature represents a marketplace innovation, empowering companies leveraging the open API to construct sub-applications within the MoMo super-app, thereby guaranteeing a seamless end-to-end transactional journey. Through these sub-apps, companies gain access to an extensive network of over 30 million users, spanning businesses across 13 different countries.

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