Pesapal, a Kenyan-based e-commerce platform, has announced the integration of American Express into its payment platform. The integration took place on 27th February, 2017. This means that American Express card holders are now able to use their cards to transact on any online payment portal that uses Pesapal.
“We are committed to making it easier to do business online, securely and conveniently. Bringing American Express on board is a big step towards this and we hope that our merchants are able to take advantage of it to grow their business.”
-Agosta Liko, Pesapal CEO
The new option opens up businesses using Pesapal to wider markets and will especially be convenient for those in the tourism sector who will add to the variety of booking and payment options available to international clients. Pesapal offers an online booking engine for businesses in the hospitality industry through its platform ReservePort.
Pesapal is available in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia and Malawi where users can transact using mobile money, Visa and MasterCard. American Express will also be available in all these markets with expansion into Nigeria projected in 2018. Renee Ng’ang’a, Pesapal’s Head of Marketing, also mentioned that a Mobile Point of Sale system (mPOS) was in the works and it will be targeted towards offline merchants, to push for cashless payments.
“Kenyans looking to get an American Express card can do so via Equity Bank who partnered with the financial services provider to offer both the green and gold card. All card users are assured top notch security when they use their cards online as Pesapal is PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) compliant and also employs bank level security features.”
-via Company Statement
As you are aware, almost all banks in Kenya offer Visa or MasterCard debit/credit cards. The pre-paid card that is in your possession is also most certainly powered by either Visa or MasterCard. The integration of American Express cards to the Pesapal platform is mostly focused at tourists visiting the country to ensure they have a wide pool of payment options at their disposal.
For the locals, if you wish to grab an American Express card you can visit any of the Equity Bank branches. Equity Bank has partnered with the financial service provider to offer both the green and gold card.
It is quite commendable the effort that Equity Bank is undertaking to incorporate different financial services into its platform. As we speak, it is also the only Bank that allows you to receive PayPal payment into your account and the rates are relatively fair. Though I understand the company has not yet initiated the 3 days maximum PayPal withdrawal limit period it had promise. The only other option is to use Chura to receive your PayPal e-cash to your mobile money wallet.