Digital Asia News Update
The service’s initial rollout is in Thailand, which was made possible through VIA, a mobile payment alliance Singtel inked with its regional associate AIS and Kasikornbank, Thailand’s largest digital bank.
Singtel Dash users will be able to shop at over 1.6 million Thai merchants displaying the VIA brand and Thai QR code.
Likewise, through the alliance, Thai tourists will be able to use their mobile wallets AIS GLOBAL Pay and Rabbit Line Pay — which currently number at 5 million users — to make purchases in Singapore. These merchants and services include Comfort Delgro taxi services, KFC, Pizza Hut, Breadtalk and 7-Eleven.
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The benefits of VIA, which is powered by B2B cross-border mobile payments network, Transferto, is that users do not have to fuss about carrying foreign currency and incurring cross-border transaction fees.
Singtel will progressively expand this alliance to include other regional associates Airtel in India, Globe in the Philippines, Telkomsel in Indonesia, and non-telcos including China’s Ping An eWallet, owned by Ping An Insurance Group.
“The VIA alliance is aimed at unifying Asia’s fragmented payments scene by connecting different mobile wallet systems across the region. As more people travel around the region, we want them to be able to enjoy the ease and familiarity of using their local mobile wallets abroad,” said Arthur Lang, CEO of Singtel’s International Group, in an official statement.
“VIA will enhance the payment experience for millions of consumers including our Group’s customer base of more than 700 million. We see a tremendous opportunity to drive the adoption of mobile payments which supports ASEAN’s push towards financial inclusion and vision of a single digital market,” he added.
Image Credit: Singtel