Visa to invest $1 bn in Africa to cash in on e-payments boom

Visa Inc announced plans to invest $1 billion over the next five years in Africa to capitalize on the emerging economy’s rapid growth in digital payments.
Visa opens technology development center in Bangalore“Africa is experiencing an unprecedented digital acceleration, with a growing number of consumers, merchants and businesses realizing the benefits of secure and convenient digital payments to fuel commerce and money movement,” said Aida Diarra, Senior Vice President, Visa Sub-Saharan Africa.

“Visa has been investing in Africa for several decades to grow a truly local business,” Chief Executive Officer Alfred Kelly Jr said in a statement.

The investments in Africa shine a new light on a major growth opportunity on the continent where cash is likely to be challenged in coming years as e-payments gain momentum, according to a McKinsey report in September.

Africa’s booming e-payments market is expected to see revenues grow by nearly 20 percent a year, reaching around $40 billion by 2025, compared with about $200 billion in Latin America, the report added.

The world’s largest payments processor has added over 50 percent more employees in the continent since the end of 2019, with the vast majority during the pandemic, Andrew Torre, Visa’s regional president for central and eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, told Reuters.

The investments will scale Visa’s operations in Africa and deepen ties with governments, fintechs and merchants.

The company recently rolled out Visa Acceptance Cloud, a platform which turns virtually any device into a payments terminal.