By Bolanle Abbas
Lagos. August 30, 2012: Interswitch Nigeria, an electronic transaction switching and payment processing company, says it plans to cut rates of connecting its payment gateway to encourage small businesses to benefit from the online transaction service.
The company says it has been listening to website owners and small businesses who often complain that they find it expensive to plug in the Interswitch payment gateway for online payment transactions on their website.
Interswitch Nigeria says it will partner with Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) and offers SMEs lower rates for connecting its payment gateway that could comes an low as N50,000.
An executive of Interswitch Nigeria, Robinta Aluyi dropped the hint to attendees at an event designed to enlighten SMEs on the Cashlite Policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria under the theme, “Evolve or Dissolve” at LCCI organised by Pcfix, a subsidiary of Goldapples in Lagos.
According to her, when the modalities are finally worked out with SMEDAN, the price cut will encourage SMEs to pay as low as N50,000 for connection to the payment gateway of Interswitch.
“SMEs can leverage various Interswitch electronic solutions to receive payment online (web) channel from customers who have debits/prepaid cards; receive payment from QuickTeller website and ATMs; view reports online real time for all payments irrespective of the channel used”, she adds.
She explains that Interswitch is not just the involved in providing Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) services but it is an integrated payment and transaction processing company that offering technology integration, advisory services, transaction processing and payment infrastructure to government banks and corporate organizations.
Interswitch has different platforms which includes Webpay (Verve card, master card), QuickTeller (multiple vendors, traffic, comply with Cashlite) and Autopay that allows organizations to initiate payment, identify the beneficiary of each payment, initiate funds transfer across registered accounts among others, Aluyi adds.
For SMEs to register for the QiuckTeller/Webpay or the Autopay bundle, Aluyi adds that, “SME’s must provide copy of registration forms from SMEDAN, filled Webpay and Quickteller registration forms, filled system access forms, authorization letter and 100 per cent payment. For the Autopay, SMEs are to fill the Autopay registration forms.”
Also present at the event was the Corporate Direct Marketing Partner for Etisalat, Niche Communications, which presented a new platform by Etisalat tagged EasyBusiness designed especially for SMEs.
“EasyBusiness by Etisalat is designed to reduce call cost for businesses and SME’s on a monthly basis. The platform allows three people in a group, and each individual in the group is given 500 minutes of talk time free as long as the lines are subscribed”, the company said.
Under the plan, “the package has three different bundles, such as the Premium that allows free talk time and SMS, Complete that allows talk time, SMS, and data package; and Classic that allows talk time and SMS at the rate of 500 naira monthly.”
Subscribers of Easy Business will call other networks and Etisalat lines outside their group at the rate of 25 kobo per second and still maintain Value Added Services from their previous plans.
The Easybusiness by Etisalat is designed to reduce call costs for SMEs and businesses that cannot help but spend a lot of airtime and money on their mobile phones.